Get a licence to drive a car

Find out the steps to getting your driver’s licence for the first time.

The new Joondalup Driver Assessment Centre is now open. 
Learn more about the range of learner driver services available.

On this page you find the steps you need to follow to get your first driver's licence, from getting your learner’s permit to driving on your P plates.

If you have a current interstate or New Zealand learner’s permit, you may apply to have your learner’s permit recognised in WA. Find out more on our visiting or moving to WA page.

How to get your first driver's licence

Step 1: Learn the road rules

You will need to know the Western Australian road rules to get your learner’s permit.

You can learn everything you need to know by reading the Drive Safe handbook.

You can also test your knowledge using our online Road Rules theory test quiz.

Step 2: Get your learner's permit

You need to get your learner’s permit before you can learn to drive a car.

You must be at least 16 years old to apply for learner’s permit to drive a car.

A learner’s permit is valid for 3 years. If your learner's permit has expired, you will need to reapply to continue to learn to drive.

How to apply

To apply for your learner’s permit, you will need to visit a Driver and Vehicle Services (DVS) centre or regional agent and:

  • submit a completed driver's licence application form (Form DLA1) (below)
  • show the required proof of identity documents
  • pay a fee for your application, theory test and learner log book
  • take and pass the theory test
  • take an eyesight test

Medical declaration

When you complete your application form, you must declare whether you have any medical conditions and/or take any medication.

You will be advised if you need a medical assessment before you are granted your learner's permit.

You must go and get the medical assessment before you can continue with your application.

Find out more about reporting a medical condition.

Learner’s permit application fees

Your learner’s permit application fee includes the cost of your first practical driving test.

Learner's permit application fees

Fee type Fee
Learner’s permit application fee including one Practical Driving Assessment (PDA) $138.70
Learner Log Book (printed) $10.70

Computerised theory test fees

Fee type Fee
Sit the Learner's Permit Computerised Theory Test $21.20
Resit the Learner's Permit Computerised Theory Test (each attempt) $18.20

Step 3: Sit the theory test

To get your learner’s permit, you will need to pass a computerised theory test that assesses your understanding of the WA road rules.

You can sit the theory test on the same day you apply for your learner’s application.

You cannot use any mobile phone or device or refer to the Drive Safe handbook during the test.

You need to get at least 24 out of the 30 multiple choice questions correct to pass the test.

You can practice using our online Road Rules theory test quiz.

If you pass the test, you will need to:

  • pay your learner’s permit application fee to be issued with your learner’s permit
  • pay for your learner log book.

A pass result is valid for 5 years.

If you do not pass the theory test, you will need to resit the test and pay an additional resit fee.

Keys4Life program

If you’ve completed the Keys4Life program through your school, you do not need to sit the theory test. You will need to provide your Keys4Life certificate when applying for your learner’s permit.

Step 4: Learn to drive and log your hours

Once you have your learner’s permit, you can start learning to drive a car.

Rules for learning to drive

When learning to drive a car you must:

  • drive with a supervising driver
  • display L’ plates on the front and back of the vehicle when you are driving.
  • not exceed the posted speed limit, and you cannot exceed 100 km/h.
  • not have a blood alcohol concentration exceeding 0.00%
  • not drive or ride in areas where learners are not permitted, such as Kings Park.

Demerit points

Demerit points apply to learner drivers. If you accrue 4 demerit points your learner licence will be suspended or disqualified.

Log your supervised driving hours

If you’re under 25 years old

You will need to record at least 50 supervised driving hours in your Learner Log Book before you can take your driving test.

5 of your 50 supervised driving hours need to be completed at night between sunset and sunrise.

If you are 25 years or older

You do not need to log any hours before applying for your driving test.

Remember, 50 hours of supervised driving is the minimum. Get as much supervised driving experience in different road, weather and traffic conditions as you can.

Download our Driving Techniques for Safer Drivers booklet for more information on learning to drive and how to prepare for your practical driving assessment.

 

Step 5: Sit the hazard perception test

The hazard perception test is a computer-based test that shows various traffic situations and assesses your ability to assess road hazards and make safe driving decisions.

During the test, you will need to use your mouse to click to indicate when it is safe to begin a manoeuvre or take action to reduce the risk of an accident.

You must pass the hazard perception test before you can take your practical driving assessment.

Practice the hazard perception test using our online tests.

We recommend that you get as much driving experience as you can before you sit your hazard perception test.

What to do on the day

To sit the hazard perception test you will need to:

You can sit the hazard perception test at any Department of Transport (DoT) Driver and Vehicle Services centre or regional agent.

All tests must commence before 3.45 pm.

You do not need to make an appointment to sit the hazard perception test at any metro DoT centre.

You may need to call ahead at our regional DoT centres or agents.

If you do not pass, you will need to resit the test on another day and pay a resit fee.

Hazard perception test fees

Fee type Fee
Sit the initial Hazard Perception Test $28.40
Each Hazard Perception Test resit (each attempt) $22.90

Exemptions

If you live more than 100km from a DoT centre or agent with hazard perception test facilities, you may be granted an exemption from completing the test.

If you’re eligible for an exemption, complete and send an Application for Exemption from Hazard Perception Test (E19) form to your nearest Driver and Vehicle Services centre or regional agent.

Once your application has been reviewed you will receive a letter advising you of the decision.

Step 6: Take the practical driving assessment

The practical driving assessment (PDA) will determine whether you’re ready for your provisional licence.

To take your PDA you must:

  • be at least 17 years old
  • have had your learner's permit for at least 6 months
  • have recorded at least 50 hours of supervised driving in your Learner Log Book, including 5 hours of night time driving (if under 25 years old)
  • passed the hazard perception test
  • feel confident that you can drive safely without a supervised driver.

Book your PDA

You can book your PDA:

  • online via DoTDirect for all metropolitan Driver and Vehicle Services (DVS) centres and most regional agency sites. You will need to create a DoTDirect account to book online.
  • in person at a regional DoT office or agent. In person bookings cannot be made at metropolitan DVS centres.

If you don’t feel ready to take your PDA, you can reschedule as many times as you need using DoTDirect. Remember, you need to give at least 2 business days' notice before you cancel. 

On the day

To be eligible to take your PDA you must:

If you pass your PDA

You will be issued with a provisional licence.

If you do not pass

You will need to book another and pay a resit fee for each PDA.

Find out more taking and preparing for the PDA. 

Practical driving assessment fee

The cost of your first PDA is included in your learner’s permit application fee.
Fee type Fee
Each Practical Driving Assessment (PDA) resit $113.70

Step 7: Get your provisional licence

To get your provisional licence (P plates) you must:

  • pass the practical driving assessment (PDA)
  • have your photo taken
  • pay the renewal fee for your licence
  • not have accrued more than 4 demerit points.

You will be on a provisional licence for 2 years. While driving during this time, you must:

  • display red P plates for the first 6 months
  • display green P plates for the remaining 18 months until you have upgraded to a full licence
  • follow the night time driving restrictions for the first 6 months.
  • have a 0.00% blood alcohol content.

Find out more about the rules for driving on your P plates.

 

Already have a driver's licence?

If you want to transfer your interstate or overseas licence, find out more on our Visit or move to WA page.

If you want to upgrade to a manual car (C class) licence or add an additional class to your existing licence, find out more on our add or upgrade a licence page.

Page last updated: Wed Feb 7 2024 2:15:35 PM