Getting Your Permit

Do I need to get a permit before getting a license?

In Texas, adults who have never had a license before are not required to have a permit or to complete a minimum amount of driving hours in order to get a driver license.

In order to schedule a driving test with a driving school though, you will need to get a permit at the DPS and present it to the driving school to schedule an appointment.

Can I drive alone with a permit?

No. Absolutely not! When you have your permit, you are only allowed to drive if there is a licensed adult 21 years old or older with you in the car.

Is my certificate a permit?

No, it is not. It is just proof that you completed the Adult Drivers Ed course and passed the DPS written test. You would need to use the certificate at DPS to get a permit or a license.

With a permit and a license, you are legally allowed to drive on the road. You cannot drive alone with a permit though – your front passenger must be a licensed adult 21 years or older.

What’s the certificate for then?

  • 18-24 year olds: this certificate is required for you to get your license since you are required to complete a 6-hour adult driver education course.
  • 25 and older: while this is not a state requirement for you to take this class, since the certificate proves that you’ve passed the DPS written test, you can show that to DPS and avoid taking the written test at their office.

What do I bring to the DPS for my permit?

Here are the essentials to bring with you:

  • DL-14A: Application for Driver License or Identification Card
  • Proof of identity and lawful US presence or citizenship: valid US passport OR your official birth certificate, social security card, and Texas ID card.  Click the link for more examples.
  • Your social security card: If you can’t find the original hardcopy card, you’ll need to order a new one. If you haven’t been issued a Social Security Number (SSN), you’ll need to fill out the Social Security Affidavit at the DPS office.
  • Proof of Texas residency (bring two): deed, mortgage statement, valid and unexpired Texas voter registration card, utility bills, etc.
  • Marriage license, divorce decree, or court ordered name change: Only if you’re using a name other than what’s on your birth certificate
  • Proof of Texas vehicle registration and financial responsibility for each vehicle that you own (ex: car insurance) OR a statement saying that you do not own a motor vehicle (items 15 and 16 in the DL-14A form) – Your name does not need to be on the car insurance
  • Certificate of Completion from Aceable: We email this to you. Your certificate will have a ‘P’ showing that you’ve already passed the written knowledge test in our course and don’t have to take it again at the DPS.
  • $25 Application Fee

*For a printable list, click here.

Where can I get driving lessons?

Selecting the driving school where you’ll do behind-the-wheel instruction is a huge decision, and it’s important that you do your research beforehand. We suggest doing a quick Google search, such as “driving school + your zip code or city“.

Some things you should keep in mind are:

Cost – on average, state-approved driving schools offer 1-10 hours of instruction which cost differently depending on how many lessons you need ($100-$600). Each school charges differently so do your research!

Location– How far is the driving school from where you live? How convenient is it for you to get to and from the driving school? How will you get there?

Schedule– Available instruction hours at driving schools vary and certain seasons are busier than others (such as summer). Does the class schedule work for you?

Reviews and ratings– What have other people said about the driving school you’re looking at? If the school has consistently received positive reviews and high ratings, maybe it’s a good idea to consider taking lessons there. Bad reviews from previous students may mean you should continue your search.

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