Useful DMV information

What to bring to DMV – permit test

  1. DMV application.  Complete this online, save confirmation number. Parent or guardian signature(s) required for minors.
  2. Driver’s Education certificate of completion-required for under 17 ½ years old.
  3. Required fee. Cash, personal check or money order, payable to DMV or credit card.
  4. Verification of birth. Birth certificate-no photo copies, valid passport, green card, resident alien card or military ID.
  5. Proof of Residency Documents (2).
  6. Glasses or contacts, if needed for vision test.
  7. For more info:

What to bring to DMV drive test – road test

  1. Permit – MUST be signed by driving instructor and parent / guardian -for minors.
  2. Vehicle registration and insurance – must be current.
  3. Glasses or contacts, if required.
  4. Drivers Education’s certificate- required for minors.
  5. Drivers Training certificate of completion – required for minors.

California Driver Handbook

Access DMV Driver Handbook

We highly recommend reading the handbook prior to taking the knowledge test.

Scheduling DMV appointments

DMV appointments are not required for written test.  Must have an appointment for road test.  Schedule appointments online at  or by telephone services 1-800-777-0133.

DMV Hours of operation

DMV hours of operation vary by location. View DMV office hours on their website at 

Take the written / knowledge test at home

Who is eligible:

  • Californian teens and adults
  • Individuals moving to California from out of state who need to take a driver’s license knowledge test

Online Knowledge Exam

  • The online test is offered in 35 languages to customers
  • Must have an internet-enabled computer or laptop with a webcam.
  • Tests are available between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding state holidays.
  • The test cannot be taken on a tablet or mobile device.

Additional Details

  • In-person test at the local DMV office is still an option
  • In-person tests are administered on touchscreen modules at DMV offices, no more paper tests
  • As a fraud-prevention measure, online test participants are required to verify their identity and agree to be monitored throughout the exam.
  • The test can be attempted online twice.
  • Customers who fail both attempts will be prompted to go to a DMV office to take the test a third time.

How to choose a reputable driving school

Choosing a professional driving school that provides quality services is vital towards paving the foundation for driving success. When researching different schools, here are some important questions to ask: How long has the driving school been established? How much experience does the instructors have? Is driving school licensed & bonded?

Another great source to find out information on driving school is word of mouth. Talk to friends, relatives or other parents before committing to a school. Although price is an important factor as a consumer, price should not be determining factor in choosing a driving school. It has been argued that the skill to drive is one of the most important skills that a person can possess. Driving school is an investment in education.  Also, consider driving schools belonging to the Driving School Association of CA and Driving School Association of the Americas.

Practicing With a Learner’s Permit

18 Years and older may drive supervised with someone who is 18 years or older who has a valid, California Driver’s License.  Under 18 years old must take their FIRST driving lesson with a Professional Driving School before they are eligible to drive supervised, unless teen is 17 ½ or older.  The supervised driver must be 25 years or older who has a valid, California Driver’s License.

Graduated licensing program for provisional drivers– Under 18 years old

After receiving a provisional license, for the first YEAR:

  • No driving between the hours of 11pm and 5am *
  • No transporting passengers under 20 years old *

*Unless there is someone 25 years or older who has a valid CA driver’s license, supervising, or other exception specified in the CA DMV Driver’s Handbook

Insurance requirements for driving schools

Driving Schools are required to be fully insured and bonded. Certificate of insurance OL 207, CVC 11103 and surety bond in the amount of $10,000, CVC 111102(a)(3) and 11102.1.

DMV permit test – written test

For drivers under 18, the written test contains 46 questions and passing is 8 errors or less. The adult written test contains 36 questions and passing is 3 errors or less.  Written test renewals contain 18 questions and passing is 3 errors or less. Appointment not required for permit test at most DMV’s.

Methods to take the permit test:  written, audio and oral, online – at home.  Test is available in most languages.   Upon passing, receive permit immediately. Permit is valid for one year from the date that you first applied.

DMV road test – drive test

An appointment is required for the road test.  Schedule online or by phone.  Applicant must:  provide the vehicle, current registration and proof of insurance. The vehicle must be in good working order. Pre-drive check includes the arm signals and identifying the equipment of the vehicle.  Road test can last 10-15 minutes.  Sign up for a 2 hour DMV road test prep class.

Traffic school- points on record

Most drivers are eligible to attend traffic school once every 18 months. Citations are classified as infraction or misdemeanor convictions.  Infractions will result in 1 point on the driving record (i.e. run red light, incomplete stop, and speeding).  This conviction will remain on the record for 3 years.  Drivers will also be required to pay the fine for the ticket and possible insurance rate increase.  Minors will incur additional consequences

A misdemeanor conviction is more serious and will result in 2 points on the driving record (i.e. DUI, hit & run, speeding over 100mph).  Misdemeanor convictions will remain on the record for 7 years.  DUI convictions will remain on driving record to 10 years.  Additional consequences of a misdemeanor conviction include large monetary fines, mandatory court appearance and possible jail time.  Misdemeanor convictions are not eligible for traffic school.

Bay Area Driving School is also an approved traffic school for the State of California.  Traffic school modalities include:  online traffic school, in-person traffic school and home study booklet.

We do not offer the DUI Program.