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How to Get Your License When You’re New to California

Welcome to the Golden State, a land of great wine, famous celebs and eternally perfect weather. It’s a wonderful place to start calling home!

As a new resident of California, one of the things you need to think about is getting your new license. We know spending your day at the DPS is the last thing you want to do and Aceable wants to help make that process as easy as possible. That’s why we wrote this handy how-to guide for getting your license here in California. Read on!

How do you get your California drivers license?

You have to apply within 10 days of moving.

Time is essential
Time is essential

Once you’ve established yourself as a California resident (this may include registering to vote, paying in-state college tuition or filing for homeowner property tax exemption), you must apply for a California drivers license within 10 days.

How do you apply for a new California drivers license?

Step 1: Make an appointment with your local DMV for the vision and written tests

Step 2: Fill out the Driver License or Identification Card Application (Form DL-44). Unfortunately, this form is only available at the DMV office. You can also call the DMV’s Automated Telephone Service at 800-777-0133 to have it mailed to you.

Step 3: What do you need to bring to the DMV to get your license? 

Step 4: Be prepared to have your thumbprint and photo taken

Step 5: Pay the $35 fee

Step 6: Pass the written permit test, which consists of 36 questions. You will get 3 chances to pass this test. Luckily, the California DMV may waive your driving exam portion if you already have a license (the only exception is if your license is from another country).

You can do it
You can do it

And you should be good to go. Congrats on your new license, and welcome to California!

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