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South Carolina Drivers License

South Carolina Drivers License

If you are not holding a driver's license issued by another state and you would like to drive on public roads in South Carolina, you will have to apply for the South Carolina drivers license.

Types of Driver Licenses

One of the first steps of the application procedure is deciding what type of a drivers license you require. Operating different types of vehicles requires different skills, and that is why the Department of Motor Vehicles offers the following types of driving licenses:

  • Class D. Regular drivers license, sufficient for operating most of the common vehicles.
  • Class G. Allows the possessor to operate a moped.
  • Class M. Motorcycle drivers license.
  • Class E. Allows for operation of motor homes and trucks, non-commercial.
  • Class F. Allows for operation of combination vehicles, non-commercial.
  • Class A, B and C. Commercial driver licenses, CDLs.

If you are a first time applicant, you will have to apply for the regular class D license. Once you gain enough experience, you can upgrade to another drivers license class, however most people will find the regular drivers license to be more than enough.

Graduated Drivers License

You cannot overstress the importance of safety when it comes to the driving and the government takes the safety on the roads very seriously. Teenage drivers are in the high risk group and the graduated license program was designed to increase their safety. The GDL is a set of restrictions and requirements that are posed onto all drivers who are under 18 years of age and the system has been proven to reduce the number of fatal accidents among teen drivers. Drivers education classes are the essential part of the graduated license program.

Applying for Learners License

If you want to get your drivers license, you have to pass the road skills test and in order to pass the road skills test, you need to be able to practice your driving skills. This is where the South Carolina drivers permit comes in. The permit allows you to drive a vehicle while being supervised by another licensed driver who will help you identify the potentially hazardous situations and avoid them. As part of the GDL system, teenage drivers have to hold their permits for a certain period of time before applying for the drivers license.

Drivers Permit Exam

When you apply for the learners license, the DMV asks you to prove that you know the state's driving laws and are ready to get behind the wheel, so you will have to take a learners permit test. The exam covers the driving rules, road signs and safe driving practices. If you took a drivers education class, you should already be well prepared for the test. Those who did not take the class can obtain a free South Carolina drivers handbook and use it as the main study guide. Taking a few permit practice tests won't hurt either, as it will actually allow you to see what kind of questions to expect at the DMV.

Once you successfully pass the knowledge exam, you will be awarded with your learners permit. At this point you can start your driving lessons.

Upgrading to Driver's License

Once you feel comfortable behind the wheel and think you are ready for your drivers license, you can schedule the road test with the DMV. Please note that if you are under 18 years of age, you must fulfill the graduated license requirements.

The DMV does not provide vehicles for the road test, so you will need to find a car you can take your test on. You can either use your relative car or rent a vehicle from one of the driving schools, most of them offer such service.

Once you successfully pass the road skills exam, you will be given your South Carolina drivers license. Applicants who are under 18 years of age will receive a restricted license.