How to Get my Learner’s Permit for a Motorcycle

Learning to ride a motorcycle

If you would like to start riding a motorcycle you must first attend a Rider Safe course.

Rider Safe is a compulsory motorcycle rider training course for all novice motorcycle riders. It provides tuition for the basic and advanced motorcycle skills necessary for the road. Rider Safe is run by experienced motorcycle riders who have undergone specialised instructor training.

The Rider Safe course also provides the opportunity to determine your riding aptitude before buying a motorcycle.

If you do not hold a current driver’s licence you must first pass a theory test that can be undertaken through the myLs online course or at a Service SA Customer Service Centre.

Payment for the course must be made at a customer service centre before attending Rider Safe.

If you have not previously held a driver’s licence, you must hold your learner’s permit for a minimum of 12 calendar months if you are under the age of 25, or six months if you are aged 25 or over, and pass an advanced Rider Safe course before you can be issued with a motorcycle licence.

You will be restricted to an R-Date licence for the first twelve months of your motorcycle licence, refer to the Learner Approved Motorcycle Scheme (LAMS) section.

Depending on your individual circumstances, different scenarios can apply if your learner’s permit is disqualified.  Please telephone 13 10 84 for details.

The Learner Approved Motorcycle Scheme (LAMS)

Under the scheme, R-Date licence holders are allowed to ride motorcycles with an engine capacity of up to 660 ml with a power-to-weight ratio not exceeding 150 kw/t. A list of approved motorcycles is available from any Customer Service Centre or the website www.sa.gov.au/motoring

In order to meet the definition of a Learner Approved Motorcycle, the motorcycle must meet all of the following criteria:

  • Be a motorcycle on the approved list of motorcycles by notice in the Government Gazette;
  • Have a power-to-weight ratio of 150 kilowatts per tonne or less;
  • Have an engine capacity of 660ml or less;
  • Be the standard model and variant as specified on the approved list; and
  • Not been modified in any way that increases its power-to-weight ratio.

Learner's PermitLearner’s Permit

R-Date licence – can ride bikes up to 660 ml engine capacity and power to weight ratio not exceeding 150 kw/t.

R licence – full rider’s licence, can ride any bike (must have held an R-Date licence for at least 12 months).

If you hold a learner’s permit for a motorcycle and do not hold a P2 or full licence for another class of vehicle, you must not ride between midnight and 5AM unless a Qualified Supervising Driver is present or you have an exemption.

The Rider Safe Course

The Rider Safe Course

Basic Course

This course is delivered in two half-day sessions (session A and B over two days).

In Session A you will learn basic motorcycle control skills including riding in a straight line, basic braking, cornering, gear shifting and some bike control theory.

In Session B your learning will build on from session A by interacting with other bikes on the riding range. This session covers more advanced bike control theory and traffic skills. A practical skills assessment will be conducted at the end of session B.

On successful completion of the Basic Course, you must present the endorsed Approval to Obtain a Learner’s Permit form at any Customer Service Centre within 12 months to obtain a learner’s permit. Failure to do so will result in you having to sit the basic course again. The permit is valid for two years and you must carry your permit at all times whilst riding.

Advanced Course

This course is delivered in one half-day session (Session C).

In Session C you will learn advanced bike control skills with emphasis placed on road riding skills and traction theory. A practical skills assessment will be conducted at the end of the advanced course.

On successful completion of the Advanced Course, you must present your Certificate of Competency at any Customer Service Centre to receive your R-Date Licence. This licence entitles you to ride a motorcycle on the learner approved motorcycle scheme list which can be found by visiting www.sa.gov.au/motoring or by contacting 13 10 84.

After completing a 12-month period riding on a Restricted R-Date Licence, you may apply for an unrestricted “R” class licence. This licence is required if you wish to ride a motorcycle of any power to weight ratio.

The Returning Rider Course

The Returning Rider Course is a voluntary course aimed at people who hold a motorcycle licence but have not ridden for at least 5 years.

The course is designed to refresh your riding skills, techniques and awareness. It is not a test.

The session involves both theory and practical components that have been developed by experienced motorcyclists who have undergone specialist instructor training.

Get Your Learners Permit Online

myLs is an online interactive learning and assessment course that you can take to get your learner’s permit in South Australia.

Designed to improve learner driver education, the myLs course focuses on road rules, road safety, and driver attitudes and behaviours, giving new drivers the best possible start before they get behind the wheel.

Assessment is embedded throughout the course in the form of quizzes, activities, and challenges. As you progress through the course, you’ll be taught all you need to know in preparation for the learner theory test.

The course should take around four hours to complete. Each topic displays an estimated completion time.  It’s important to take your time to thoroughly understand the road rules and concepts included in the course.

The learner theory test is the final stage of the myLs course and will take about 30 minutes to complete.

You have 12 months from the date you enrol in myLs to complete the course and learner theory test.  Unlike the learner theory test conducted at Service SA Centres, the learner theory test in myLs can be attempted as many times as you need to pass at no additional cost.

More information here: https://www.mylicence.sa.gov.au/myls

How to get your Learner’s permit

To obtain a full driver’s licence you must progress through the stages of the Graduated Licensing Scheme. You start the process by obtaining a learner’s permit. You must be 16 years or older before you can apply for a learner’s permit.

The Theory Test

To obtain a learner’s permit, you must pass a Theory Test. This can be achieved by either:

  • Completing the ‘myLs’ course; or
  • Passing a paper or computer based theory test (in-office at Service SA).

The ‘myLs’ course is an online interactive learning and assessment course designed to prepare new drivers before getting behind the wheel. myLs still includes a theory test which must be passed, however there’s a number of benefits myLs has over the in-office theory test, such as:

  • You can start myLs from the age of 15 years and 9 months
  • You can progress at your own pace with 24/7 availability online
  • You pay a once only fee for a 12 month subscription which allows you to take the test as many times as needed
  • All the learning content needed to pass the test is included in myLs.

To enrol for myLs you must provide full evidence of identity at a Service SA Centre, have your photograph taken and a mySA GOV account created.

For further information regarding myLs visit mylicence.sa.gov.au/myLs.

Despite the ease and convenience of myLs, the option to sit the theory test at a Service SA Centre is still available. You must make a booking and pay for your theory test although, unlike myLs, you’ll need to pay for each attempt you make.

Once you have your learner’s permit if you allow it to expire for more than 12 months you will be required to sit myLs or the theory test again.  Proof of age, address and identification documents must be presented at the time of sitting the theory test.

Consider the benefits of the myLs course.  Learn more at myLs

Learner’s permit

Upon completing the myLs course or passing a theory test you can pay the learner’s permit fee and obtain a learner’s permit that will allow you to drive for two years under ‘learner’s permit conditions’.

If you complete the myLs course, you can pay and obtain your permit online through your mySA GOV account.

Learner’s permit holders can learn to drive in a High-powered Vehicle because they are required to be supervised by a Qualified Supervising Driver at all times.

Learner’s permit conditions

Learner’s permits are issued subject to conditions.  If you breach a condition you will lose your learner’s permit and be disqualified from driving.  This is in addition to any other penalty.

The conditions are:Theory test

  • you must not drive a motor vehicle when there is any concentration of alcohol in your blood or the presence of THC (the active component in cannabis), Methylamphetamine (also known as speed, ice or crystal meth) or MDMA (Ecstasy) in your blood or oral saliva
  • if you commit a speeding offence, you will also commit a breach of your learner’s permit conditions if you exceed the speed limit by 10 km/h or more
  • must drive with a qualified supervising driver in the seat next to the driver
  • when riding a motor bike you must not carry a passenger on the motor bike, or in a sidecar attached to the motor bike, unless that person is a qualified supervising driver
  • You must not accumulate four or more demerit points during the learner’s permit period.

The following laws also apply to the holder of a learner’s permit.  If you breach any of these laws you may incur penalties such as fines, demerit points or loss of licence.

  • you must only drive the class of motor vehicle stated on your licence
  • you must display the correct size ‘L’ plates so that they are clearly visible from the front and rear of the vehicle (rear only for motorcycles)
  • you must carry your learner’s permit at all times whilst driving
  • you must not drive over 100 km/h even if the local speed limit exceeds 100 km/h
  • you must not use any mobile phone function while driving including hands free mode, Bluetooth technology and loud speaker operation
  • holders of a motor cycle learner’s permit who are under 25 years of age and do not hold a P2 or full licence for another class of vehicle must not ride between midnight and 5AM unless a qualified supervising driver is present as a passenger on the bike or in a sidecar attached to the bike (exemptions apply)
  • holders of a motorcycle learner’s permit must not lane filter.

‘L’ platesL' plates

The minimum size for the ‘L’ plate sign is defined in this diagram. The sign must be displayed and clearly visible from the front and rear of the vehicle (rear only for motorcycles). ‘L’ plate signs must not be displayed when the driver of the vehicle is not a learner driver (except a licensed Driving Instructor driving to or from a lesson). ‘L’ plates must have the letter ‘L’ painted in black on a yellow background.

Examples of in-office theory test questions

The in-office theory test consists of road safety and road rule questions with multiple-choice answers. This is a selection of the types of questions you will be asked. You will need to read these sections of the handbook carefully to help you pass the theory test. Practise the learner’s theory test.

How to get your P’s (Provisional License)

PROVISIONAL LICENSE (YOUR “P’S”)

Two stages have been introduced to the Provisional license (P1 & P2) and a Hazard Perception test must be passed to progress from P1 to P2.

The Hazard Perception Test

To progress from an L to P1 licence you must pass the Hazard Perception Test, which is a computer-based test that measures your ability to recognise and respond to potentially dangerous situations and react appropriately. Research has shown that a lack of these skills is a major factor in crashes involving young novice drivers.

A Hazard Perception Test can be booked, by telephoning 13 10 84, and undertaken in any Customer Service Centre. A fee is payable for each attempt. If you live more than 100 kilometres (as the crow flies) from a place where the test is conducted, or on Kangaroo Island, you are exempt from having to sit the Hazard Perception Test. For Hazard Perception Tests at Service SA, bookings are required. Telephone 13 10 84 for further information.

You can practise the Hazard Perception Test online.

Obtaining a P1 Provisional Licence

Before you can apply for a P1 provisional licence you must:P1 provisional licence

  • be at least 17 years old
  • pass a Hazard Perception Test
  • have held the learner’s permit for a minimum of 12 full calendar months if under the age of 25
  • have held the learner’s permit for a minimum of six full calendar months if aged 25 or over
  • have a minimum of 75 hours of supervised driving (including 15 hours of night driving) recorded in your driving companion (not required for learner motorcycle riders) and
  • pass a practical driving test (VORT) conducted by an instructor or Accreditation Auditor or
  • complete a CBT&A course with an instructor. see here

If you fail a practical driving test, you are not allowed to do another practical driving test for at least 13 clear days. This is to allow you to practise your driving skills in preparation for the next practical driving test. Alternatively, you may complete the Competency Based Training & Assessment (CBT&A) method instead.

After passing a practical driving test or completing the Competency Based Training & Assessment, a Certificate of Competency will be issued to you by the Authorised or Accredited Instructor. You can then apply to be issued with a licence that is subject to provisional licence conditions (a P1 provisional licence). To apply for your P1 provisional licence, you must present the Certificate of Competency and your completed Log Book (75 hours of supervised driving) and declaration at a Customer Service Centre, together with the appropriate fee.

The Certificate of Competency does not authorise you to drive. Only when you have obtained the P1 provisional licence are you authorised to drive while under P1 provisional conditions.

A provisional licence is issued for 3 years, 1 year on P1 and 2 years on P2.

‘P’ plates

The minimum size for the ‘P’ plate sign is shown in the diagram right and consists of a red letter ‘P’ against a white background. The sign must be displayed and clearly visible from the front and rear of the vehicle (rear only for motorcycles).P' platesP' plates

Provisional driver’s licence laws and conditions (P1 and P2).

Provisional licences are issued subject to conditions.  If you breach a condition you will lose your licence and be disqualified from driving.  This is in addition to any other penalty.  The conditions are:

  • you must not drive a motor vehicle when there is any concentration of alcohol in your blood or the presence of THC (The active component in cannabis), Methylamphetamine (Also known as Speed, ice or crystal meth) or MDMA (Ecstasy) in your blood or oral saliva
  • you must not exceed any speed limit by 10 km/h or more
  • you must not accumulate four or more demerit points during the provisional licence period.
The following laws also apply to the holder of a provisional licence, if you breach any of these laws you may incur penalties such as fines, demerit points or loss of licence:
  • you must only drive the class of motor vehicle stated on your licence
  • you must carry your provisional licence at all times whilst driving
  • you must not drive a high powered vehicle while you are under the age of 25 (unless you have an exemption certificate)
  • you must not drive over 100 km/h even if the local speed limit exceeds 100 km/h
Laws that only apply to holders of a P1 Provisional Licences (These laws do not apply to P2)
  • You must display the correct size “P” plates so they are clearly visible from the front and rear of the vehicle (rear only for motorcyclists)
  • you must not use any function of a mobile phone including hands free mode, blue-tooth technology and loudspeaker operation.
  • If you are under the age of 25 you must not drive
    • between midnight and 5AM, or
    • with more than one passenger aged 16 to 20 years (excluding immediate family members)
      unless  a Qualified Supervising Driver is seated next to you or you meet the exemption criteria
  • Holders of a motorcycle P1 Provisional Licence must not lane filter.

Obtaining a P2 Provisional Licence

You will automatically progress to a P2 provisional licence after you have held your P1 provisional licence for 12 months.

High-powered vehicles

High-powered vehicle restrictions apply:

  • if you are a provisional licence holder under the age of 25

High-powered vehicle restrictions do not apply:

  • if you are 25 years of age or older
  • if you have an exemption certificate
  • if you are under 25 and hold a full licence.

Graduated License Scheme – Explained

The Graduated Licensing Scheme is the process of obtaining a full driver’s licence – a gradual process which involves:

  • at least 75 hours of supervised driving during the learner’s permit phase (not required for learner motorcycle riders)
  • a compulsory hazard perception test to progress from L to P1
  • a two-stage provisional licence (P1 and P2).
L plates

L Plates

Learner’s Permit

  • 16 years or older
  • complete the myLs course or pass a theory test
  • (MOTORCYCLE class must pass basic Rider Safe)
P1 plates

P1

Provisional Licence

  • 17 years or older
  • pass Hazard Perception Test
  • if you are under the age of 25 you must hold your learner’s permit for at least 12 months.
  • if you are aged 25 or over you must hold your learner’s permit for at least 6 months.
  • complete 75 hours (includes minimum 15 hours at night) of supervised driving
  • pass Vehicle On Road Test (VORT) or Competency Based Training & Assessment (CBT&A) course
  • (BIKE class must pass advanced Rider Safe course)
P2 plates

P2

Provisional Licence

  • 18 years or older
  • Must have held a P1 licence for 12 months
Full licence

Full Licence

  • 20 years or older
  • have held a P2 licence for two years
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