How to Get Your Driving Licence in South Africa

By | May 6, 2021
Driving Licence ,South Africa

How to Get Your Driving Licence in South Africa. Getting a driving licence in South Africa may feel a bit daunting, especially if you’re getting yours for the first time. We have put together all the information you need to help you get your driving licence.

First things first. Your learner’s licence.

To get your learner’s licence, you need to prove that you have the basic knowledge required to operate a vehicle and follow the rules of the road. When you have your learner’s licence, you are only allowed to drive while you are supervised by a licensed driver.

Some key facts about a learner’s license:

Your learner’s licence is issued immediately when you pass the written test.
To get a learner’s licence for a motorcycle under 125cc, you must be 16-years-old, or older.
To get a learner’s licence for a motorcycle over 125cc, you must be 18-years-old, or older.
To get a learner’s licence for a motor vehicle, you must be 17-years-old, or older.
A learner’s licence is only valid for 24 months from the date of issue and cannot be extended.
There are different learner’s licences based on the various categories of vehicles available:

Code 1: This is for motorcycles with or without a sidecar, motor tricycle or quadricycle. 
Code 2: This is for a motor vehicle, including a minibus, bus or goods vehicle, with a gross vehicle mass (GVM) less than 3 500kg. 
Code 3: This is for a motor vehicle with a gross vehicle mass (GVM) more than 3 500kg. 

How to apply for your learner’s licence:

If you live in Gauteng, you can apply online for your learner’s licence: https://online.natis.gov.za/#/. If you do not live in Gauteng, you can visit your nearest Driving Licensing Testing Centre (DLTC) to book your test date and confirm your booking.

If you live in any other province in South Africa, you need to make your booking in person. You will need the following:

Your South African ID document or smart ID card.
Two identical black and white ID photos (confirm the number of photos with your local DLTC before heading over).
Your booking fee*.
Proof of residence (a municipal account, for example). If the proof of residence is not in your name, the owner needs to make an affidavit declaring that you live there and include a copy of the proof of residence.
If you stay in an informal settlement, you need to bring a letter with an official date stamp from the Ward Councillor confirming your postal and residential address.

What documents do I need to complete?

To apply for your learner’s licence, you need to complete the Application for learner’s licence form (LL1), which is available at the DLTC. If you are 65-years-old or older, you must also complete a medical certificate form (MC), which is also available at the DLTC.

TIP: You can either opt to have your eye test done at the testing centre, or have an eye test performed by a qualified, approved optometrist and submit your form at the testing centre.

Before you write your test

Make sure you study road signs, motor vehicle controls and road rules so you have a basic knowledge of a motor vehicle and road signs. There are many K53 study aids available from reputable book stores and online to help you.

On the day of your test, you need to:

Submit the booking receipt.
Bring your ID.
If you pass the test, you need to pay the issuing fee*.

How long does it take?

Once you have passed, your learner’s licence is issued on the same day, providing you pass and pay the issuing fee*.

*For all fees, contact your local DLTC.

Now that you have your learner’s licence, you can learn how to drive and get your driving licence.

Enrol for driving lessons

There are many driving schools in South Africa. Make sure you choose a reputable driving school that will teach you the correct way to follow K53 road rules. Find out from friends and family who they used, or talk to officials at your DLTC to find out which driving schools are in the area. 

Even though this may seem expensive, you will need a professional to show you the ropes and help you practice! 

TIP: Remember, as a learner driver, you need to be supervised by a licensed driver whenever you are driving.

What types of driving licences are there?

There are different licences for the various categories of motor vehicles in South Africa. Here is a summary to help you make the best choice for your driving licence:

Code A1 – for motorcycles with or without a sidecar and an engine not exceeding 125 cc.
Code A – for motorcycles with our without a sidecar and an engine size exceeding 125 cc.
Code B – for a motor vehicle, including minibuses with the GVM not exceeding 3 500 kg.
Code C1 – for a motor vehicle, a bus, minibus or goods vehicle with a GVM between 3 500 kg and 16 000 kg.
Code C – for a motor vehicle, a bus or a goods vehicle with a GVM exceeding 16 000 kg. 
Code EB 
for a light motor vehicle that is articulated (light motor vehicle drawing a trailer) with a gross combination mass not exceeding 3 500 kg.
for a combination of a motor vehicle with a tare not exceeding 3 500 kg and a minibus, bus or goods vehicle with a GVM not exceeding 3 500 kg.
Code EC1
for an articulated heavy motor vehicle (heavy motor vehicle drawing a trailer[s]) with a  gross combination mass between 3 500 kg and 16 000 kg.
for a combination of a motor vehicle with a tare between 3 500 kg and 16 500 kg and a minibus, midibus, bus or goods vehicle with a GVM between 3 500 kg and 16 000 kg.
Code EC – for an articulated heavy motor vehicle (heavy motor vehicle drawing a trailer[s]) with a gross combination mass exceeding 16 000 kg or a combination of a bus or goods vehicle with a GVM exceeding 16 000 kg.

How do I apply for my driving licence?

Gauteng residents should apply online for their driving licence: https://online.natis.gov.za/#/. You can read more about the online application process here.

If you live in any other province in South Africa, you need to make your booking in person. You will need the following:

Your South African ID document or smart ID card.
Four identical black and white ID photos (confirm the number of photos with your local DLTC before heading over).
Your booking fee*.
Proof of residence (a municipal account, for example). If the proof of residence is not in your name, the owner needs to make an affidavit declaring that you live there and include a copy of the proof of residence.
If you stay in an informal settlement, you need to bring a letter with an official date stamp from the Ward Councillor confirming your postal and residential address.

What documents do I need and how does the process work?

Complete the Application for Driving Licence Form (DL1) at the DLTC.
Keep your receipt as proof of payment and as confirmation of the test date and time.
On the date of the test, you need to be at the DLTC at the specified testing time.
Your receipt and learner’s licence will be verified before you proceed to the test.
You will be assessed by a qualified examiner.
If you pass the test, your fingerprints will be taken and you will undergo an eye test at the DLTC. Alternatively, you can have an eye test performed at a qualified, approved optometrist and submit the form at the DLTC.
If you pass the driving test, you need to pay an issuing fee* to receive a temporary driving licence, which you will use while you wait for your driving licence card.

How long does it take?

A temporary driving licence is issued immediately and you will receive a notification when your driving licence card is ready for collection. It should take four to six weeks. You should collect your driving licence card at the DLTC where you applied.

*For all fees, contact your local DLTC.

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