This Step: Get a Learner Permit
Get a Learner Permit in Virginia
You're eligible to obtain a learner's permit upon turning 15½ years old. All Virginia teens older than 15½ but younger than 19 are required to carry a learner's permit for a minimum of nine months. Drivers 19 and older are given the option of completing a drivers ed course or holding a learner's permit for 30 days before applying for a driver's license.
A) Ace a Few DMV Permit Practice Tests
Prepare for the written test by taking multiple practice exams. All questions are similar to those found on the actual permit test. Questions and answers are directly based on topics covered in Virginia's Driver's Manual.
B) Gathered Required Documents and Virginia Permit Fees
Arrive at your local DMV service center with:
- Proof of identity
- Proof of Virginia residency
- Proof of legal presence
- Proof of Social Security number
- A completed driver's license application; a parent or guardian must sign the application if you're under 18
- *Payment for permit, license and test fees
* You'll apply for your learner's permit and driver's license at the same time, which includes paying all permit and licensing fees.
C) Take the Written Permit Test
Visit any DMV service center to take the written (knowledge) test. Exams are administered on a walk-in basis only. In addition, you'll also be required to take a vision screening. Pass both tests and you'll leave the service center with a learner's permit. If you're younger than 18, the permit will be valid until your 20th birthday.
Retake the Written Permit test
You must, if younger than 18, wait 15 days before trying again. If you're 18 or older, you can retake the test within 15 days by paying a $2 fee. Fail a third time and you must, regardless of age, complete the classroom portion of a state-approved drivers education course.