Logging Behind-The-Wheel Practice Hours

By: Kat Saks June 10, 2012
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Got a drivers permit? Hit the road. Seriously!

Many states require drivers to log a certain number of driving practice hours once they pass driver's ed and receive a learner's permit. In some states, practice hours are a requirement for obtaining a full-fledged drivers license. This usually coincides with your driver's training requirements.

So, if you're new behind-the-wheel, get the scoop on clocking in on the road.

Proof of Behind-the-Wheel Practice

If your state motor vehicle agency requires you to complete practice driving hours before you can obtain a drivers license, you'll need to provide proof of your time behind-the-wheel. States that require practice driving typically maintain a driving hours log form.

The first-time driver and parent or legal guardian complete the driving hours log to document when, where and how long the learner was on the road in the driver's seat. Driving logs also document what driving skill the learner practiced during each session.

Once you receive your drivers permit, ask your local licensing bureau how to obtain an official driving hours log. You can also refer to our driver's checklist for more info.

Practice Driving Day and Night

Whether you're a night owl or an early riser, you'll need to get a certain number of daytime and nighttime driving hours under your belt if your state requires you to log practice hours.

Most states require a greater number of daytime driving hours than nighttime, but check your state's unique rules and regulations to ensure you manage just the right mix of practice time.

Stay Within the Limits

Many states ask learners to adhere to certain restrictions when logging their practice driving hours. For example, you might not be allowed to drive late at night or in the wee small hours of the morning.

Also, driving with minors in the car may be disallowed. Some of these restrictions apply to the entire time a driver maintains a learners permit.

Check online for more on driver's permit driving restrictions. And consult with your state motor vehicle agency for the details in your neck of the woods.

Did you have to log practice driving hours before you could obtain a drivers license? Tell us about the experience in the comments section below.

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