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Alaska Learners Permit Restrictions - AK Driving Permit Rules

Alaska Permit Restrictions

Every first time drivers license applicant in Alaska has to apply for an Alaska learners permit first. A learners permit allows you to start practicing driving, but it does not grant you full driving privileges and carries a number of learners permit restrictions you need to observe at all times. Supervised driving only, curfew and mandatory seat belts - these are just some of the Alaska permit restrictions. Although these restrictions and limitations may seem as a nuisance to you right now, you must understand that they were created for your own protection and are there to keep you safe during your first hours of driving.

If you are wondering why do you even have to apply for an Alaska learners permit and can't apply for a drivers license right away, there is a simple answer to that. It was found that lack of driving experience underlies a very large portion of traffic accidents and introduction of a learners permit stage is an attempt to lower your risk of being involved in an accident during your first months of driving. A learners permit gives you the chance to practice driving while there is a more experiences driver seated next to you. The supervising driver can help you with advice or take control of the vehicle should the situation become dire.

Permit Restrictions - 18 Years of Age and Older

If you are at least 18 years of age, there are not that many Alaska permit restrictions for you to follow. The only real limitation to your permit is that you cannot drive unless there is another driver at least 21 years of age seated next to you while you are practicing. Apart from that, you're free to do whatever you want, but we advise that you observe the following safety rules:

  • Seat belt. Always wear a seat belt, especially since your chances of crashing are significantly higher than those of a more experienced driver.
  • No distractions. Don't play with the radio or talk to your friends. Keep your eyes on the road.
  • No cell phones. Talking on a cell phone is a distracting activity even for experienced drivers and is getting banned in most states.

For teenagers, these would be mandatory restrictions, for you they are just safety tips. However, although there are less permit restrictions for you to observe, you still have to go through the same testing procedures as younger drivers and pass an Alaska permit test before you can be issued with a drivers permit. If you want to see what kind of questions come up on the knowledge exam, try yourself with a free Alaska practice permit test.

Permit Restrictions - Under 18 Years of Age

If you are under 18 years of age, you are subject to the Alaska graduated drivers license system and there are additional requirements and restrictions that you will need to observe. The minimum age when you can apply for a learners permit is 14 and you will need to pass a vision exam and a permit test at that point. Once you have a drivers permit, the following Alaska permit restrictions will apply to you:

  • Supervised driving only. You must have a person with a valid Alaska drivers license at least 21 years of age with no less than one year of driving experience seated next to you whenever you are driving.
  • Seat belts. Seat belts must be worn by everyone in the vehicle.
  • Cell phone. You cannot use a cell phone or any other communication device while driving, neither hand-held nor hands-free.

You must hold a learners permit for at least 6 months and be at least 16 years of age before you can take an Alaska drivers test and upgrade to a provisional drivers license. During this permit holding period, you are to complete at least 40 hours of driving with your parents, with at least 10 of these hours done at night. If you are ticketed for a moving violation, your holding period is reset and you have to wait another six months before taking the drivers test. Additional punishment, such as suspension of your driving privilege, can be applied in case of repeated offense, you may check the details in the Alaska driver manual.

Although completion of a drivers education class is not mandatory, you should strongly consider taking an Alaska drivers ed course at this stage. Drivers ed classes provide a lot of useful info about driving in adverse weather conditions, which is especially useful in Alaska.

Provisional License Restrictions

Provisional drivers license is the second stage of the graduated license system and, although it allows you to start driving alone, it still holds the following restrictions:

  • Curfew. No driving alone between 1 a.m. and 5 p.m. A supervising driver must be present if you need to drive during these hours. Exceptions can be made if you are traveling to/from work or a school related activity for which no other transportation was available.
  • Passenger restrictions. You cannot carry any passengers unless there is a person at least 21 years of age present in the vehicle. The rule does not apply to your siblings.
  • Seat belts. Seat belts must be worn by everyone in the vehicle.
  • Cell phone. You cannot use a cell phone or any other communication device while driving, neither hand-held nor hands-free.

You must hold a provisional drivers license for at least six months without receiving a ticket for a moving violation. Just like in the situation with a learners permit, if you receive a ticket, the holding period is extended by another six months. Once the holding period is over, all permit and license restrictions are lifted and you are awarded full driving privileges.