Age limits – driving

This section sets out the basic age rules for driving cars, mopeds and motorcycles. You will find much more detailed information about age limits – as well as other useful information about learning to drive – in the relevant section of the UK Government website here. Licensing drivers and vehicles in the UK is the responsibility of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA).

Driving a car

Before you can drive you need to apply for a provisional driving licence. You can apply for this when you are 15 years and nine months old but you will not be able to drive a car until you are 17.

In order to obtain a full licence to drive a car you will need to take a theory test and once you have passed this a practical test.  You can take your theory test any time from your 17th birthday onwards.

Driving a moped or motorcycles

The rules for mopeds and motorcycles are more complicated than for cars. Different rules apply to different types of vehicle. A helpful flowchart from the DVLA is set out here.

In essence, you need to be 16 to drive a moped (up to 50cc) and 17 to drive a motorcycle up to 125cc. Higher age limits apply to more powerful vehicles.

There are special rules for agricultural vehicles, larger vehicles and for people in receipt of  certain disability benefits – more information on all of these is found here.

You can find out more about learning to drive and the practicalities of driving lessons, car insurance and running a car, on our driving page:

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Driving in the UK