3 things to keep in mind when applying for a student driver’s license in the Philippines

Updated Feb 01, 2021 | Same topic: Let's Drive Smart!

Alongside requirements and procedures, discovering restrictions, conditions as well as student license validity is very significant in applying for a driver’s license in the Philippines.

Nowadays, getting a student driver license from Land Transportation Office (LTO) is extremely convenient. However, to have a student permit also has its guidelines to be weighed up. As a matter of fact, lots of student permit holders do not know what are their responsibilities, limitations and even the student license validity.

Therefore, to give you a good preparation for your upcoming driver’s license application, we’ve written this article which concentrates on these issues.

LTO Student Permit | Requirements, Qualifications & Steps

To be well informed of the complete procedures and the requirements to apply for a student driver’s license, you can also check out our previous post titled “What Philippines Students need to do to get LTO Student Driver’s License.”

1. LTO student driver license restrictions & conditions

As always, it’s crucial for students to be aware of which type of vehicle they’re allowed to operate. If you intentionally ignore this and drive a car that is not indicated in your student license on the Philippine roads, there’s a high chance that you face charges and penalties. For this reason, understanding the driver’s license restrictions codes is requisite.

Driver’s license restriction codes are allocated based on the kind and gross vehicle weight (GVW) of the vehicle a driver is permitted to operate. In detail, the GVW is the overall weight of a vehicle as identified by the maker, including the vehicle’s body, chassis, accessories, engine, fluids, fuel, driver, passengers and other loads. Below is the list of restriction codes from 1 to 8 in the Philippines:

LTO Restriction Codes based on GVW
 Allowed vehicles  Restriction codes
Motorcycles/Motorized Tricycles Restriction 1*
Motor vehicle up to 4500kg GVW Restriction 2*
Motor vehicle above 4500kg GVW Restriction 3
Automatic transmission up to 4500kg GVW Restriction 4*
Automatic transmission above 4500kg GVW Restriction 5
Articulated Vehicle 1600kg GVW & below Restriction 6
Articulated Vehicle 1601kg up to 4500 kg GVW Restriction 7
Articulated Vehicle 4501kg & above GVW Restriction 8

* Note: Restriction 1, 2, and 4 apply to Non-Professional driver’s licenses only. Otherwise, all Restrictions are allowed for Professional license holders.

lto restriction code

Driver’s license restriction codes are allocated based on the kind and GVW of the vehicle

In case you fell through the actual/practical examinations on any specific restriction code, Restriction 2 for instance; and at the same time, you applied for Restriction 1 and 2, only Restriction 1 will be printed on your driver’s license. In other words, you’re just given authorization to operate motorcycles or motorized tricycles, not motor vehicle up to 4500kg GVW.

Along with restriction codes, applicants are likewise assessed during application in the event they have impairments that potentially handicap their driving capability. Then, they will be assigned a condition code if they cannot pass within a category. To cite an illustration, if you have a visual impairment, it’s necessary for you to wear eyeglasses (Condition A) while driving the vehicle. Now, please take a look at this list of Conditions for applicants.

LTO Condition codes in the Philippines
Condition codes Requirements
A Wear eyeglasses
B Drive with special equipment for upper limbs
C Drive with special equipment for lower limbs
D Daylight driving only
E Should always be accompanied by a person without hearing impairment

Please note that special equipment of applicants is assessed by the LTO licensing evaluator during the application process if it fits the applicants with the vehicles to be used. What’s more is that if having a visual impairment prior to the application process, you had better bring eyeglasses to stay away from hassle in medical exam.

2. Student driver license expiration in the Philippines

Aside from learning about the student permit LTO limitations, it’s also of the essence to know how long the validity of the student permit is. According to LTO, a student permit is valid for 1 year from the date of issuance and may not be revised, renewed and modified any longer.

student driving license validity Philippines

A student permit is valid for 1 year from the date of issuance

So, can you apply for a Non-Professional/Professional driver’s license after your student permit expires? The answer is NO. Right after 1 month of having your student driver’s license, you can apply for a Non-Professional driver’s license. For Professional one, you must hold the student permit 6 months at least. Hence, applying for one of them before your student driver’s license becomes invalid.

3. Is driving with student permit only allowable?

The fact remains that anyone who is 17 years old and above can apply for a student permit. Nevertheless, not all students know that they cannot operate a vehicle without being accompanied by an adult who already possesses a Non-Professional driver’s license at least. Driving with student permit only means you’re against the law, alternatively stated. Obviously, be sure to drive the car according to your driving restrictions and conditions.

practice driving with adults to get student driver license

Students cannot operate a vehicle without being accompanied by a duly licensed driver

Here you go, now, are you confident enough to apply for a student permit? Simply follow the rules and regulations Philkotse.com has just listed to eliminate some hurdles in getting a driver’s license in the country. Good luck!