Overview: Getting Your Driver’s Licence in Queensland

l-250Read about the process to getting your car driver’s licence in QLD. This article covers P1, P2 and open licences.

Queensland is one of the many places that has what is known as a graduated licensing system.  This is a process whereby new drivers must work through a process in order to obtain a full, unrestricted driver’s licence which carries along with it all privileges enjoyed by every unrestricted driver.

The first step to obtaining a driver’s licence is the Learner Licence.  You must be at least 16 years of age to obtain this licence.  This type of licence allows you to drive a car together with a supervisor who has held an open licence for a minimum of one full year.  The supervisor’s licence must be valid (not expired nor suspended).

Jump To:
What is the P1 licence?
What is the P2 licence?
What is the open licence?

You will need to take a written test which is compiled of 30 questions (multiple choice) which are regarding rules of the road and the licence requirements of drivers.  You can obtain a manual to study for this test in advance, which is highly recommended.  There is also an online practice test which can be used for practice.

Once you are confident that you now all of the answers that will be asked on your test, you can apply for your learner licence at any police station that issues licences (if you live in a remote area), at QGAP office or your local Department of Transport and Main Roads office.  You will need to bring identification along with a fee for the written test and the fee for your licence.

Once you complete your written test, if you pass you will obtain a learner licence and a TMR logbook.  If you do not pass your test you have to wait until the next business day to repeat the test.  Each time you take the test, you must pay the testing fee.

The P1 Provisional Licence

The P1 Provisional licence is the next step after one has obtained their Learner Licence.  You will need to schedule a practical driving test to obtain your P1.  You must be at least 17 years of age and you must have already met the logbook requirements.  Some new rules came into effect for provisional licence drivers in July, 2018.  Those are that you cannot drive between midnight and 5 a.m. and that you cannot have more than one passenger aged between 16 and 20 years of age.  If you are caught in the act of ignoring these restrictions, you can be subject to a fine of $417 which includes the fine of $357 and the $60 victim surcharge levy as well as 3 demerit points.

You are allowed to drive alone with a P1 licence but you must display your red P plates and only drive those vehicles which are allowed on your licence class.  If you are pulled over by the police, you must show them your licence when asked.  If you have any conditions on your licence then those must be observed.  You are allowed ZERO alcohol and you must not use your mobile phone unless you are parked.  This includes not using hands-free or any blue tooth devices.  Passengers in your vehicle cannot make use of the speaker function on their mobile phone to your benefit.

As a P1 provisional driver, you are not authorized to supervise learner drivers and you cannot operate any type of performance vehicle.  In order to qualify to take your P1 test, you must also take the Hazard Perception Test which analyzes your ability to assess and react to dangerous situations.  If you accumulate 4 or more demerit points in any one-year period then you must decide whether you will follow a good driving behaviour period or take a suspension.

Once you have held a P1 Provisional Licence for one year you have become eligible to upgrade your P2 Provisional Licence.

The P2 provisional Licence

In order to apply for the P2 Licence, you must be 18 years of age and you must have held a P1 Licence for a minimum of 1 year.  You will also need to pass the Hazard Perception Test and pay the fee of $149.00.  If you at least 25 you must have held a learner’s licence for one year and you must have been at least 25 years of age when you passed your practical driving test.

Once you have your P2 licence, there are no passenger restrictions and you are also allowed to use a mobile phone, hands-free.  You will need to display your green P plates and only drive vehicles which are allowed under your licence class.   You must keep your licence with you at all times and produce it to a police officer when asked.   You must also obey the zero-alcohol limit as a P2 licence holder.

As a P2 driver, you still cannot drive any performance vehicle, accumulate 4 or more demerit points in a one-year period or supervise a learner driver.

The Open Licence

You must be a minimum of 20 years of age to qualify to apply for your open driver licence.  You will need to have held a provisional licence for the mandatory period and produce evidence of your identity.  You need to declare your medical fitness for your vehicle class and provide a medical certificate stating you are medically fit to drive if one is requested.  The licence free for an open licence is $44.00.  You must also complete an application form (F3000).

As a driver with an open licence, you must comply with the conditions on your vehicle licence and only drive those vehicles that your licence class permits.  You must obey the general alcohol limit of below 0.05 if you are driving a personal vehicle, however the 0.00 limit applies for most other situations including driving a motorcycle, a truck, a bus, a B-double, road train, tow truck, tractor, taxi and numerous other vehicles.  The best practice is to simply drive with 0.00 alcohol in your blood stream at all times.  Once you have held your open licence for one year you are allowed to supervise a learner driver.

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