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How to Get a Motorcycle License in Ohio

Steampunk Motorcycles

Are you a resident of Ohio looking to get a motorcycle license? Are you confused about exactly what you need to do to get it? Don't be. Getting a license isn't complicated. You'll need to pass a few tests and prove you have what it takes to operate a motorcycle, but the process is nothing to be worried about. Providing you're willing to swot up on safety standards and learn the basics, you'll have your license in hand sooner than you know. Here's exactly what you need to know about how to get a motorcycle license in Ohio.

Apply For a TIPIC

The first step towards getting your license? Apply for a Temporary Instruction Permit Identification Card (TIPIC). To apply, you'll need to be at least 15 and a half years old. If you're under the age of 18, you'll need to get the written permission of your parent or guardian.

Step 1: Study - To get your TIPIC, you'll need to pass a motorcycle knowledge test. As ( notes, the test consists of a series of multiple-choice questions designed to test your understanding of basic motorcycle operating and safety standards. The test isn't tricky but you'll need to study up to give yourself the best chance of passing. As all of the questions are based on Ohio’s Motorcycle Operator’s Manual, make sure you read the manual from beginning to end before you sit the test. The manual can be accessed at

Step 2: Take the Test - Once you're ready to take your test, book an appointment at a driver exam station. Be sure to gather all of the documents you'll need to take with you in advance. This includes proof of your identity and proof of your SSN. Once you arrive at the exam station, you'll need to sit both the written test and a vision screening test. If you fail the written test the first time around, don't worry: you can resist it as many times as needed.

Step 3: Purchase Your TIPIC - Once you pass the knowledge and vision test, you have 60 days to apply for your TIPIC at your local DMV office. This time around, you'll need to take a receipt confirming you passed the tests, along with proof of your residency in Ohio, your citizenship status, proof of identity, and your SSN. As the TIPIC will only be issued after you pay the required fee, be sure to have $22 in your wallet. If you're under the age of 18, a parent or guardian will need to accompany you to the office. The TIPIC will be valid for one year from the date of issue. Although a TIPIC gives you the opportunity to practice your skills on the open road, be aware that it's not a full license. To avoid getting into trouble, be sure to abide by the following rules:

  • No riding after dark
  • No carrying passengers
  • No riding on interstates or congested roads
  • No riding without a helmet or protective eyewear

Apply for a License

Once you have your TIPIC, practice your skills as much as possible in anticipation of the next step. Once you're confident of your abilities, you can move onto the next stage in the process: applying for a license. Bear in mind that if you're under 18 years old, you'll need to have held your TIPIC for a full 6 months before you can apply for a license. You'll also need to hold a probationary driver's license and have completed both a motorcycle education safety course and a driver’s education course.

Step 1: Take a Skills Test - Schedule an appointment for your skills test at a driver exam station. When you attend the test, be sure to bring along your TIPIC, a registered, insured motorcycle, and protective gear. The test itself should take around 10 to 15 minutes to complete. It's not designed to trip you up, but you'll be expected to show proficiency at basic procedures. If you'd rather skip the skills test completely, you can choose to complete a Motorcycle Ohio course instead. The course will need to be completed within 60 days of applying for your license. As per (, the basic course takes around 6 hours to complete. Courses are available at most license bureaus and numerous driving education schools throughout Ohio. To take the course, you'll need to pay a $50 non-refundable registration fee. A motorcycle and helmet will be provided for you.

Step 2: Apply For Your License - Once you've successfully passed your skills test, head to a deputy registrar’s office to complete the final step in the process: buying your license. You'll need to present proof of your social security number and surrender your TIPIC. The license fee varies depending on your age. As per DMV.ORG, the fees for 2021 are as follows:

  • Age 16 - $25.75
  • Age 17 - $24.50
  • Age 18 - $23.25

If you're under the age of 18, your license application will need to be co-signed by a parent or legal guardian.

Once you've completed the application and paid the fee, you'll be issued with your license. The type of license you receive will depend on whether you already hold a driver's license. If you don't hold a valid driver's license, you'll be issued with a Motorcycle Only license that authorizes you to operate motorcycles only. If you already hold an Ohio driver's license, you'll be issued with a Motorcycle Endorsement as an add-on to your existing license.

Advice for New Residents

If you're a new resident of Ohio with an out-of-state motorcycle license, you'll need to apply for a new license within 30 days of establishing residency in Ohio. As per, you can complete the process by submitting the required information (proof of residency, ID, and SSN) to your nearest BMV office. Depending on the state in which your current license was issued, you may need to sit additional tests. Once done, you'll need to surrender your current license. A temporary license will be issued immediately to allow you to continue to operate your motorcycle until your official license follows by mail.

Benjamin Smith

Written by Benjamin Smith

Benjamin Smith is one of the managing editors of Moneyinc. Ben's been focusing on the auto and motorcycle sector since 2005. He's written over 1000 articles in the space and continues to learn about it each day. His favorite car is "any Bugatti" and he's a die hard Harley Davidson fan.

Read more posts by Benjamin Smith

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