Learner and P-Plate Rules in WA

In Western Australia (WA), obtaining a WA driver's licence is a process that involves several stages, each designed to ensure that new drivers are adequately prepared for the responsibilities of driving. This guide offers an in-depth look at the rules and requirements for learner drivers and provisional drivers in WA.

Obtaining a WA Learner's Permit

The journey to becoming a licensed driver in WA begins at 16 years of age. Aspiring drivers are required to provide proof of identity and pass a computerised theory test that covers multiple-choice questions on road rules. Additionally, an eyesight test must be completed. These steps are conducted at Driver and Vehicle Services (DVS) centres or through regional agents. The learner's permit obtained is valid for up to three years, allowing ample time for individuals to gain the necessary driving experience under supervised conditions.

Learner Licence Restrictions WA

Once an individual has obtained their learner's permit, they must adhere to several restrictions to ensure their safety and the safety of others on the road. Key restrictions include:

  • L-Plate Display: Learners must display L-plates on both the front and rear of their vehicle to clearly indicate their learner status to other road users.
  • Supervised Driving: A supervising driver, who must have at least four years of driving experience, is required to be present with the learner at all times. The supervising driver must have four years experience in the vehicle type that is being used - a supervising driver with an automatic licence cannot teach a learner driving a manual.
  • Speed Limit: Learner drivers are restricted to a maximum speed of 100km/h, irrespective of higher posted speed limits.
  • Alcohol and Mobile Phone Usage: A zero blood alcohol concentration is mandatory for learner drivers, who are also prohibited from using any function of a mobile phone while driving.
  • Vehicle Restrictions: Depending on the class of the learner’s permit, there are restrictions regarding the type of vehicle (automatic or manual) that can be used for learning. A learner driver who is licenced for an automatic cannot drive a manual, however a manual licenced driver can drive an automatic.
  • Demerit Points: Accumulation of four or more demerit points results in a disqualification period of at least three months.

Requirements While on a Learner Permit in WA

For learner drivers under the age of 25, there is a requirement to complete 50 hours of supervised driving, including five hours of night driving. This driving time must be recorded in an approved logbook or through the Learn&Log app. However, those aged 25 and above are not required to complete logbook hours. Before progressing to a P1 licence, all learner drivers must pass a hazard perception test.

Obtaining a Provisional Licence (P-plates WA)

Transitioning to a provisional licence involves additional steps. Learners must be at least 17 years old and have passed a practical driving assessment, which typically lasts around 35 minutes. The vehicle used for this assessment must meet specific requirements, such as having a centrally mounted handbrake accessible to the assessor. Initially, a learner driver is issued red P-plates, which are then changed to green P-plates after six months.

Provisional Licence Restrictions in WA

Provisional licence holders are subject to a set of restrictions as they continue to develop their driving skills. These include:

  • P-Plate Display: Red P-plates for the first six months, followed by green P-plates, must be displayed on the vehicle at all times.
  • Night Driving Restriction: For the first six months on red P-plates, drivers are not permitted to drive between midnight and 5am, except under certain exemptions.
  • Alcohol and Mobile Phone Use: A zero blood alcohol level is required for provisional drivers, who can use a mobile phone only if it's in a mount or can be operated hands-free.
  • Demerit Points: There are specific demerit point thresholds depending on the provisional licence stage. In the first year, up to three demerit points are allowed, increasing to seven points in the second year.

Obtaining a Full Driver's Licence in WA

After completing the two-year probationary period without any licence cancellations or suspensions, provisional drivers in WA automatically transition to a full driver’s licence.

The structured licensing system in WA is designed to ensure that new drivers gain essential driving experience and demonstrate responsible driving behavior before being granted full driving privileges. Adherence to these rules and regulations is crucial for learner and provisional drivers as they work towards obtaining their full driver's licence, ensuring their safety and the safety of others on the road. Compliance with these guidelines is key to becoming a competent and responsible driver in Western Australia.

Start Your Journey with OnlyCars.com.au

Now that you have an understanding of the restrictions and requirements for learner and provisional driver's licences in WA, it's time to start your journey with OnlyCars.com.au. For more information on the various licence types, or to renew, upgrade or add a licence, head to the WA Department of Transport website. To find our more about the Learner and P-Plate laws in other states, select your preference below:

Australian Licence Laws

Learner and P-Plate Rules ACT

Learner and P-Plate Rules Tasmania

Learner and P-Plate Rules SA

Learner and P-Plate Rules NT

Learner and P-Plate Rules Victoria

Learner and P-Plate Rules NSW

Learner and P-Plate Rules QLD


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