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When Can You Get Your License

Getting a drivers' license is a great proof of maturity because a teenager is considered a legal adult. Therefore, many teens often want to gain it as soon as possible. Depending on where you live, the minimum driving age is different. However, most commonly set at 18 years old. If you do not reach the minimum driving age to get a driver's license, you can ask for a driving permit, which allows you to operate a vehicle legally on the road under supervision. To obtain it, you have to pass a test requiring you to prove your driving ability as well as knowledge of road rules.
If you want to own a driving license and you believe you have enough ability to drive well on the road, you can try this way to obtain it. In reality, most jurisdictions recognize driver's licenses issued by another. If you are not old enough to get a license, you can take a driving exam in a jurisdiction with a lower driving age. On the other hand, some states in the US still prohibit drivers under the minimum driving age regardless of your license which is recognized by another state.


Driving Age by State

As I mentioned above, in the United States, the age at which teenagers might get a driving permit, as well as the license in each state, is different. Therefore, you should learn the necessary information before you create a plan to get a driver’s license.

Lowest Driving Age in USA

At the top of the list is South Dakota, where at the age of 14 years and 6 months, teens may start a plan of achieving a driver's license. If you meet all requirements, you can get it by just 16. Besides, South Dakota also issues a driving permit for teenagers who are just 14 years old. However, with a permit, they don't have freedom completely to drive on the road. Many states ask you to drive with a legal skilled driver. Moreover, there are many other restrictions in this case such as the number of passengers on the car, maximum speed, cell phone usage, etc.

  • Car rental age by state
    Note that the minimum rental age to rent a car and get a driver's license is different in the United States. The reason is the lowest to be allowed to rent a car is determined by the agency offering this service. The fact proves that there are many motor vehicle accidents caused by teenagers every day and the younger a driver is, the higher the crash risk is. Therefore, many rental car agencies only provide services when you turn 18 years old. In the United States, the minimum age to rent a car is 21 years old.
  • Some popular questions about driving age by state in the United States

What is the Minimum Age for Operating an Auto Vehicle in the United States?

The minimum age for operating an auto vehicle in the United States is 16 years old in some states. Besides, some other states ask you to turn 18 years old. If you are not old enough to obtain a full license, you can try to get a driving permit instead which allows you to drive on the public roads under supervision. Here are states in the US which issue a permit for teen ages just 14: Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, North and South Dakota.

Which States in the United States Have the Lowest Minimum Age to Drive a Car?

They are South Dakota, North Dakota, and Montana. If you live in these states, you can take a driving test and get a driver's license by 16. This means that you completely become a legal driver on the road when turning 16.

In reality, there are some arguments about the lowest minimum age to operate a car. Many people believe that increasing the minimum age will reduce the number of teenage accidents. The explanation to this point is that teens often have trouble concentrating on the road and they are easily distracted by cell phones, passengers in the cars, particularly teen passengers. Statistics show that the more teen passengers in the car, the more likely the auto accidents can occur.

Here are some statistics about teenage driving that you shouldn’t skip.

Which States in the United States Have the Highest Minimum Age to Drive a Car?

Most states in the United States such as Connecticut, Florida, Nevada, Illinois, Texas, and more will issue a driver's license for those who reach 18 years old and pass driving tests. When can I get a driver's car in California? 17 years old at which you meet the requirement of age to obtain a full license. 15 years and 6 months old at which you can get a permit 20 years old is the rental car age.

What is the Minimum Age to Rent a Car in the United States?

In general, in the United States, rental agencies will supply rental services with you if you are at least 20. Namely, some states such as Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minneapolis, and Illinois require you at least 21 to be able to rent a car. Rental agencies want to limit the risk because the younger and new drivers tend to cause motor vehicle accidents more than older drivers.

Compare the Minimum Age Among Some States in the United States

Requirement of Age




New York


The minimum age to drive on the road legally

17 years old

18 years old

18 years old

17 years old

18 years old

To obtain a learner’s permit

15 years and 6 months old

15 years old

15 years old

15 years old

15 years old

To rent a car

20 years old

20 years old

20 years old

20 years old

20 years old

If you have any questions about this topic, please feel free to comment below. We will try our best to give you an exact answer.

About Jason Trevino

Jason is a talented and advanced author, blogger and auto expert. He is determined in researching thousands of products so as to make it easy for the owners to find the best products. He focuses on giving users better understanding on products they are using and ones they anticipate to buy.

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