Different Types of Driving Licence in India – Check Validity Period & Renewal Process


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According to The Motor Vehicles Act of 1988, one can’t drive in India without a driving licence. A DL or Driving Licence is issued by the government to certify that the licence holder is eligible to drive on Indian roads. But, does that mean with one type of driving licence a person is permitted to drive all types of vehicles? The answer is no!

There are different types of driving licence in India for specific purposes and each hold a certain importance. Let us dig deeper to understand all about the different types of driving licence, their validity and their renewal procedure.

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Four Types of Driving Licences in India

Different types of vehicles are seen plying on the Indian roads and it is impossible to have just one driving licence to meet their specific requirements. Therefore, we have four main types of driving licences in India:

1. Learner’s Driving Licence: 

It is basically the first type of driving licence in India issued to a person who wants authorization to drive a vehicle. It is valid only for a period of 6 months and this is the time frame during which the person must learn to drive safely adhering to all traffic rules with proper road sense.

2. Permanent Driving Licence: 

One has to pass a written and driving test to obtain a permanent driving licence in India. It is a certificate that certifies that the licence-holder is capable of driving safely and has a thorough knowledge of road signs and rules. A permanent driving licence is issued for 20 years from the issuance date.

3. Commercial Driving Licence: 

People who want permission to drive Heavy Motor Vehicles or HMV should possess a commercial driving licence. The eligibility criteria to obtain a commercial driving licence varies from the eligibility criteria for a learner’s and permanent driving licence. It is issued for 3 years and must be renewed thereafter.

4. International Driving Licence: 

It is a driving licence for those who are keen to drive vehicles abroad. It certifies that the licence holder is eligible to drive on foreign roads. Printed in different languages, the international driving licence is valid for one year and cannot be renewed.

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Different Classes of Driving Licences in India

Apart from the types of driving licences, we have different classes of DL in India. These vary depending on the types of vehicles plying on the Indian roads and they are as follows:

Driving Licence Class Type of Vehicle
MC 50CC Motorcycles with 50CC or less engine capacity
MC EX50CC All types of Motorcycles and Light Motor Vehicles
MC Without Gear Scooters and Motorcycles without gears
MC With Gear Motorcycles
LMV-NT Non-Transport Light Motor Vehicles such as Jeeps, Cars, and so on
HPMV Vehicle for commercial purposes or for carrying passengers
HMV Heavy Motor Vehicles
HGMV Heavy Vehicles like Trucks, etc. used for goods transportation
MGV Medium Goods Vehicles
LMV Light Goods Vehicles
TRAILER Allowed only for a Heavy Vehicle Driving licence holder

How to Apply for a Driving Licence 

To obtain a new driving licence in India, a candidate must follow these steps:

Step 1: Visit the official Sarathi Parivahan website of the Road Transport and Highways Ministry

Step 2: Choose the option of “Driving Licence”

Step 3: Proceed with the “Apply Online” option

Step 4: Select “New Driving Licence” from the drop-down list and “Continue” after checking the directions listed there

Step 5: Choose the type of driving licence in India you want to possess

Step 6: Enter the required details and click on “OK” and then upload the documents

Step 7: Choose the date and time to visit the RTO for the test and then make the payment for your application

Step 8: Once the application is approved and processed, you will get a message from the RTO to come for the test

Step 9: You will get the driving licence only after clearing the test

Step-By-Step Procedure for Driver’s Licence Renewal

A driving licence in India is valid only for a limited period and thereafter, it must be renewed. Different types of driving licences have different validity periods, but all need renewal after a certain period.

Follow these steps for driving licence renewal:

Step 1: Visit the official website of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways

Step 2: Choose your state

Step 3: Select the “Services on Drivers Licence” option from the drop-down menu of “Driving Licence”

Step 4: Enter details in the application form

Step 5: Proceed by clicking on “Next Button”

Step 6: Visit the RTO on the date scheduled with the Fee Slip and other essential documents

Driving Licence Fees in India

The fee for a driving licence in India is different for different reasons:

Purpose Fee
Driving Licence Test Fee Rs. 300
Driving Licence Fee Rs. 200
Driving Licence Renewal Fee Rs. 200
International Driving Licence Fee Rs. 500
Learner’s Driving Licence Fee Rs. 150

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In a nutshell, a driving licence is an essential piece of document required to drive a vehicle in India. Driving without a licence in India is a punishable crime. Having a DL once is not a lifetime guarantee. You also must check its validity and get it renewed before it expires.

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FAQs: Different Types of Driving Licence in India

Can I have 2 Indian driving licenses?

No, a person can’t possess 2 driving licences in India. One can possess a driving licence from two different states of India only after obtaining legal permission.

What is DL full form?

The full form of DL is Driving Licence. It is a mandatory document without which one is not allowed to drive a vehicle in India.

For how many years is a driving licence valid in India?

A driving licence in India is valid for 20 years or until the licence holder attains the age of 40 years. The licence can then be renewed for 10 years.

What is the full form of LMV?

LMV full form is Light Motor Vehicle that includes motor cars, auto rickshaws, vans, and so on. To drive an LMV, a person needs to possess an LMV driving licence from the government of India.

Can I get a driving licence without a test in India?

To obtain a driving licence in India, a candidate has to clear a test and get a certificate. After getting the certificate, the candidate can easily apply for a driving licence without any driving test held at the RTO OR Road Transport Office.

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Jun 05, 2023
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PayBima is an Indian insurance aggregator on a mission to make insurance simple for people. PayBima is the Digital arm of the already established and trusted Mahindra Insurance Brokers Ltd., a reputed name in the insurance broking industry with 17 years of experience. PayBima promises you the easy-to-access online platform to buy insurance policies, and also extend their unrelented assistance with all your policy related queries and services.

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