First-Timer’s Guide To Getting A Driver’s License

Knowing how to operate a vehicle is a good ~adulting~ skill to have.

Traffic in the country may suck the life out of us, but knowing how to operate a vehicle is still a good ~adulting~ skill to have. If you’re thinking of learning how to drive, the first thing you need to obtain is a student permit, which is relatively easier and cheaper to get. Student permit holders, however, are only allowed to operate a vehicle when they are accompanied by someone who holds a valid driver’s license.

If you’ve had a valid student permit for a month or more, you are now eligible to apply for a driver’s license. There are two kinds: non-professional driver’s license and professional driver’s license.

The main differences between a non-professional driver’s license and professional driver’s license. are the requirements and restrictions. Those who wish to get a professional driver’s license are allowed to operate bigger and heavier vehicles, but would first need to have a valid non-professional driver’s license for at least one year or a valid professional driver’s license with RC 1,2, 4, and 6 for at least six months before being eligible to apply for one. Here's a list of restrictions by Top Gear Philippines. If you're a newbie driver, it is recommended that you first apply for a non-pro license. Here's how:

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What are the qualifications for application?

According to the LTO website, these are the qualifications for driver’s license application:

  • Must be at least 18 years old
  • Must be physically and mentally fit to operate a motor vehicle
  • Must be able to read and write and Filipino, English, or applicable local dialect
  • Must have had a valid Student Permit for at least 30 days prior to application

What should I prepare and bring with me to LTO?

Here are important things you’ll need to bring on the day you’re applying:

  • Accomplished Application Form for Driver’s License (ADL)
  • Valid Student Permit
  • Medical exam certificates
  • A pen for the written exam

Now that I'm at my chosen LTO branch, what do I do?

Step 1: Submit your requirements at the receiving area.

Step 2: Wait for your photo and signature to be taken.

Step 3: Pay the fees at the Cashier.

The fees you’ll need to pay include the Application Fee (P100), Computer Fee (P67.63), License Fee (P585), and another Computer Fee (P67.63) for a total of P820.26.


Step 4: Take the written exams.

For applicants of non-professional driver’s license, the exam has 40 items and you’ll need a minimum score of 30 to pass. For applicants of professional driver’s license, the exam has 60 items and you’ll need a minimum score of 45 to pass.

You have the option to take the written exams in either English or Tagalog (Friendly tip: It’s highly suggested that you take the written exams in Tagalog as it is easier to comprehend than the the English version.) There are available reviewers for both languages on LTO’s website. Aside from this, you will have to familiarize yourself with the different road traffic signs as they will be part of the exams, too.

The exams are multiple-choice and there's no time limit. You’ll also be informed of your score on the same day.

Step 5: Take the practical driving test.

In the event that you pass the written exams, you’ll immediately be asked to take the practical driving test. Should you fail the written exams, you will have to wait for another month before you can apply again.


Step 6: Get your receipt and license card.

Once you pass your practical driving test, you will be issued the official receipt as well as your driver’s license. If you fail the practical driving test, you may come back and re-apply after a month.









About the author
Mylene Mendoza
Candy Staff Writer

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First. Pixie dust and paper cuts – these are the first things Wendy knew about Peter Pan. Aurora first met Prince Philip when she was sixteen. Learning how to ride a bike was also a first while I was growing up, but you are probably the first of too many. The first collection of dust and stars; maybe Luna will try to ask, who was your first? I might answer and tell her that it was you.

The first of too many stars in the sky. You are the first of too many fallen leaves during fall – and you will be the most anticipated snowflake as winter comes. A dark path that you can’t see without any light, hence, you were once the moon and there are the stars that shine so bright at night. Are we too early? Or we just really want to be ahead of time? Even in a glimpse, I would like to see the two of us connect as if we can reach the sky. There are other parts of the heavens you have never saw and other oceans you haven’t laid your feet onto – but the constellations will always wait for you. Close your eyes, love, close your eyes. Start counting backward: 5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Count backward until you see the twinkling lights that will guide you to the right path. To the right satellite; to the right person. A first.

There are many firsts – first love, first heartbreak, first sport you played, the first thing you do in the morning, the first thing you remember about the person in front of you. There are a lot. It’s actually up to us how we will consider something as a first. So, Primo, you are already a first of too many.

Bea Alamis Just now

If you know me, and know me well, I am not the biggest fan of idyllic lifestyles. With a Type A personality, I act immediately upon whatever challenge that needs to be addressed. I actually enjoy keeping my mind preoccupied: doing university work in my favourite cafe then running errands around town, grocery shopping here, updating my accounts there, photocopying documents on the way down the street - all just in time before having a glass of champagne at the bar with my friends come evening.

And so, you could imagine my bewilderment when the next challenge to be faced was an extensive self-quarantine protocol. I didn’t know what to do when my greatest responsibility in this situation was to do nothing at all. My first few attempts to combat my consternation were very much rooted in distraction and imagination. My distractions involved conducting research, writing songs, calling family and friends, filming videos, and eating chocolate! My imaginations and fantasies were centred on travelling, shopping, even clubbing (which I rarely do) for when they find a cure to COVID-19. I did anything and everything that could be considered constructive in order to pass the time, mainly hoping I could just undertake the basic human necessities to survive - that is, eat and sleep the day through - until the next day comes, until the world is closer to becoming a better place, until quarantine ends, until my flight follows through, until I see my family and friends again.

Days in self-isolation and suspended flights turned to weeks and turned to months. By the third extension here in Spain where I study Fashion Business, I had to tell myself this shall be my new normal now, that I was blessed to be healthy, that I was tired of merely existing and missed what it was like to actually live - even if just within four walls. Little by little, I began to find significance in the simple occurrences of the day: the soft glare of the rising sun beaming golden streaks through my bedroom window upon waking up, the fragrance of freshly washed bed sheets that I had painstakingly hung to fit a relatively small clothes rack without crumpling them, the crunch and tanginess of warm toasted bread topped with raspberry marmalade, the buzzing sound of a phone call from home just waiting to be answered, to the caress of a fuzzy sweater to keep warm at night. I realised, “What pleasures to be enjoyed in the pause of slow living!” Through this continued pause, which I loathed at first, I began to appreciate each moment of the day rather than wish it would pass more swiftly, moments I had overlooked so often before the lockdown. I started to find that the challenge of self-isolation was never to pause both the regular routines of life as well as the positive emotions that came with these - as initially, I thought it meant to pause all happiness, so as to withstand a time of endurance in hopes for a better tomorrow, much like a form of delaying gratification. Life is just too fragile these days to delay gratification any further.

Life has paused, but it has not stopped. Believe that like any punctuation mark in a sentence, the pause will provide the right timing of things to take place. Till then, let us not waste our time waiting. Instead, we could be in the moment, seek substance in simplicity (that is, in what we already have), And enjoy the pleasure in pause. “Practice the Pause. When in doubt, pause. When angry, pause. When tired, pause. When stressed, pause. And when you pause, pray.”

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