How to Get a Motorcycle License in Florida

Motorcycle Clubs

Before you can ride a motorcycle in Florida, there are a couple of steps you’ll need to take. Number one? Get your license. Getting the right credentials isn’t a complicated process, but it does involve several important steps you’ll need to be aware of. The process varies according to whether you already hold a driver’s license or not. It will also be a little different if you’re a new resident looking to convert an out-of-state license into a Florida license. To help take the mystery out of the process, here is everything you need to know about how to get a motorcycle license in Florida.

New Residents

If you have an out-of-state motorcycle endorsement or license, getting a Florida license is relatively easy. Unlike new riders, you won’t need to worry about taking a test or undergoing a safety course. Providing your current license is still valid, you can transfer your license at your local Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) driver licensing office. You’ll need to bring along:

  • Out-of-state endorsement/license
  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of citizenship status
  • Proof of your Social Security number
  • Two documents that show your Florida address

Once you hand over the required documentation, your existing endorsement/license will be transferred to a Florida one. The process is slightly different if you hold a license from Alabama, in which case you’ll need to provide a Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) Basic Rider Course completion card before your endorsement can be transferred.

How to Get a Florida Motorcycle License

Florida offers two forms of license – a motorcycle-only license for those without an existing driver’s license, and a motorcycle endorsement, which can be added to an existing license. To apply for either, you must be at least 16 years old. Regardless of whether you apply for a motorcycle endorsement or a motorcycle-only license, you’ll need to complete a Basic Rider Course (BRC) via the Florida Rider Training Program. Only once you’ve passed the course can you apply for your license.

First Time Drivers

If you don’t hold a driver’s license, you’ll need to take a traffic law substance abuse, education course as a first step in getting your motorcycle license. You can either take the Drugs, Alcohol, Traffic Awareness, First Time Driver course (DATA) or the Traffic Law Substance Abuse Education course (TLSAE).

How to Get a Motorcycle Endorsement

As per dmvflorida.org, if you already have a current, valid Florida driver’s license, you can apply for a motorcycle endorsement to be added to it. This will then authorize you to ride your motorcycle using that license. To apply, you’ll need to visit your local DHSMV driver licensing office or tax collector location and take along the following:

  • A valid completion certificate from an MSF Basic Rider Course
  • Your Class E FL driver’s license
  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of SSN
  • 2 proofs of address

Once you pay the required fee, you’ll receive your endorsement. The endorsement will run in tandem with your license and will be valid for as long as the license itself is valid.

How to Get a Motorcycle Only License

If you don’t hold a driver’s license, you can apply for a motorcycle-only license rather than an endorsement. To apply you’ll need to be at least 16 years old and have held a Class E learner’s permit for a minimum of one year without incurring any moving traffic violations. Applicants aged 18 years old and over are not required to hold a learner’s permit. However, those that don’t will need to pass a class E operators license test, including a written test and a vision test. As per aceable.com, the test consists of 50 multiple-choice questions. If you wear corrective lenses or glasses, be sure to bring them along to the vision test.

All applicants, regardless of age and irrespective of whether they hold a learner’s permit, will need to successfully complete a Motorcycle Safety Foundation Basic Rider Course.

  • To get the license, you’ll need to visit a driver license office or tax collector office with the following:
  • A valid completion certificate from an MSF Basic Rider Course
  • Learner’s license if you are under 18 years old
  • Proof of identity
  • Proof of SSN
  • 2 proofs of address

Once you’ve paid the processing fee and passed the required tests, your motorcycle-only license will be issued.

Motorcycle Safety Foundation Basic Rider Course

Unless you’re converting an out-of-state motorcycle license, all applicants for a Florida motorcycle license will need to complete a basic safety course as part of the application process. The course will teach you the basics of safe operating standards and motorcycle handling procedures. The course is available from numerous providers across the state, with fees varying according to the provider. Most courses will consist of 10 hours of practical practice and 5 hours of classroom theory. In most courses, motorcycles and helmets are provided by the school but always check in advance.

Process for Military Applicants

As per permit.bike, if you serve with the military and hold a Florida driver’s license, you can apply for a motorcycle license while you are out-of-state by either successfully passing an MSF approved motorcycle safety course or completing a military-sponsored motorcycle safety course.

Process for Three Wheel Motorcycles

If you intend to operate a three-wheel motorcycle, the process is slightly different. Rather than a Motorcycle Safety Foundation Basic Rider Course, you’ll need to take the S/TEP – Sidecar / Trike Evaluation Program, which will equip you with the skills needed to operate three-wheel motorcycles and sidecar rigs. Once you pass the course, you’ll need to provide a completion certificate along with the required proof of identity in order to gain your S restriction. This will entitle you to operate three-wheeled motorcycles only: if you intend to operate a two-wheeled vehicle, you’ll need to follow the previously outlined process to get a motorcycle endorsement.

Fees for Florida Motorcycle License

Regardless of whether you apply for a motorcycle endorsement or a motorcycle-only license, you’ll need to pay both a licensing fee of $48 plus a motorcycle endorsement fee of $7. If you apply for your license at a DHSMV tax collector office rather than at a driver licensing office, expect to pay an additional fee of $6.25.

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