Australia Driving Licence or Driver Permit

Australia Driving Licence: Obtaining an Australian driving licence allows you to legally operate motor vehicles on public roads. Here is an overview of driving licences in Australia:

Australia Driving Licence or Driver Permit

Types of Licences

There are different licence classes issued in Australia:

  • Class C – Car licences
  • Class R – Motorcycle licences
  • Class LR – Light rigid vehicles
  • Class MR – Medium rigid vehicles
  • Class HR – Heavy rigid vehicles
  • Class HC – Heavy combination vehicles

Eligibility and Minimum Age

To apply for a licence you must:

  • Be at least 16 years old (Class C)
  • Be at least 17 years old (Class R)
  • Meet minimum age for other licence types
  • Pass required driving tests
  • Meet medical fitness and vision requirements

Licence Validity

Licence validity periods:

  • Class C – 10 years
  • Class R – 5 years
  • Other classes – 3 years

Licences must be renewed before expiry to remain valid.

New Residents and Tourists

Visitors can drive on foreign licences for up to 6 months. New residents have 3 months before getting an Australian licence. An International Driving Permit is recommended.

Getting Your First Australia Driving Licence

Here are the steps to obtaining your initial Australian driving licence:

1. Apply for a Learner’s Permit

  • Take a computerized road rules theory test.
  • Pass with at least 32 correct answers out of 35 questions.
  • Get a learner’s permit valid for 10 years.

2. Log Supervised Driving Hours

  • Drive under supervision to gain experience.
  • Minimum 120 hours for car licences.
  • Keep logbook recording hours completed.

3. Book and Pass Driving Test

  • Take practical driving test when ready.
  • Demonstrate competent driving skills and road safety knowledge.
  • Pass score is 90 out of 100 points.

4. Apply for Provisional Licence

  • With approved test, apply for provisional licence.
  • Hold for minimum of 2 years before getting full licence.
  • Obey restrictions on high-powered vehicles, towing etc.

Renewing an Australian Driving Licence

To continue driving legally, renew your licence before it expires:

  • Licences can be renewed up to 6 months before expiry.
  • Renewal can be done online, by post or in person.
  • Complete renewal form and make payment.
  • New photo may be required.
  • Updated licence card will be issued.

Replacing a Lost or Stolen Licence

If your Australian driving licence is lost or stolen:

  • Report loss/theft to police and obtain incident number.
  • Apply for replacement at transport authority.
  • Provide police report and old licence details.
  • Pay replacement fee.
  • A duplicate licence will be issued.

Changing Your Address on Your Licence

When you change your residential address:

  • Notify transport authority within 14 days.
  • Provide proof of new address.
  • Pay update fee.
  • Your driving licence will be updated with new address.

Getting an International Driving Permit

To drive overseas, you may need an International Driving Permit (IDP):

  • Apply for IDP at Australian Automobile Association.
  • Bring current Australian licence and passport photos.
  • Complete application and pay fee.
  • Carry licence together with IDP when driving abroad.

Traffic Rules and Regulations in Australia

When driving in Australia, you must follow these main road rules:

General Driving

  • Drive on the left side of the road
  • Mandatory seat belt wearing
  • No mobile phone use while driving
  • Obey speed limits and road signs

Speed Limits

  • 50 km/h in urban areas
  • 100 km/h on major highways
  • 110 km/h on national freeways

Alcohol Limits

  • General limit 0.05% blood alcohol content
  • Lower limits apply for novice and professional drivers


  • Licence must be carried at all times when driving


  • Speeding fines from $100 AUD and up
  • Driving unlicensed – fines up to $1200 AUD

Resolving Traffic Violations and Fines in Australia

If you commit a traffic offence, here is how to deal with resulting fines:

Pay the Fine

  • Pay within time period stated on ticket to avoid penalties.
  • Online payment, BPAY, phone and in-person options.
  • Get receipt as proof of payment.

Dispute the Fine

  • To dispute, submit written representations with evidence.
  • May need to appear in court.
  • Fine may be dismissed if dispute successful.

Demerit Points

  • Points accumulated lead to licence suspension.
  • Attend traffic school to reduce points.
  • Obey conditions to regain licence after suspension.

Failure to Pay

  • Unpaid fines referred to Fines Enforcement Registry.
  • Additional fees added.
  • Can lead to licence cancellation or vehicle impoundment.

FAQ on Australian Driving Licences

1. How much does it cost to get an Australian driving licence?

Getting a new Australian licence costs $100-200 AUD. This includes test and permit fees. Renewal every 5-10 years ranges from $20-75 AUD depending on licence class.

2. What is the minimum driving age in Australia?

The minimum age to hold a car learner’s permit is 16 in most states. You can get a motorcycle learner’s permit starting at age 17. The minimum unrestricted licence age is 18-20 years depending on location.

3. Can I drive in Australia with my overseas licence?

Yes, most foreign licences are valid for driving temporarily in Australia. New residents have 3 months to obtain an Australian licence. An International Driving Permit is recommended.

4. Do I need to take driving lessons to get an Australian licence?

No, taking professional lessons is not compulsory. You can practice under supervision of a fully licensed driver. But lessons are recommended to learn driving skills.

5. How do I replace my lost Australian driving licence?

Report loss to police immediately and apply for replacement at your state or territory’s transport authority. Provide identification and pay the replacement fee to get a duplicate licence issued.