South Carolina learners permit

Getting Your South Carolina Beginner’s Permit: Rules and Requirements

by Zutobi · Updated Jan 06, 2022

Are you looking to get your South Carolina beginner’s permit? If so, you’ve come to the right place. The process may seem complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. Teenagers must go through the Graduated Drivers License program in order to get introduced to safe driving practices over a long period of time.

In this article, we’ll go through all the details so you know exactly what to expect during the permit phase.

What is the Beginner’s Permit?

The SC beginner’s permit is the very first step to the graduated driver’s license program for new drivers of all ages. You are eligible for one as soon as you turn 15 years old.

If you are 17 and older, you will only need to hold your beginner’s permit for 180 days. After this period, you’ll be able to take the driving skills test in order to receive your full driving privileges.

Teenagers aged 15 and 16 years old will have to go through a few more steps of the GDL before getting their full driver’s license. You must hold your permit for at least 180 days, complete a driver’s education course that includes at least 8 hours of classroom instruction and six hours of behind the wheel practice, be currently enrolled in school with satisfactory attendance, and practice driving for at least 40 hours (including 10 hours of night driving) with your parent or legal guardian.

How to Get a Beginner’s Permit in South Carolina

  1. You can visit any SCDMV location in the state. If you are under 18, your parent or legal guardian will need to accompany you to provide consent.
  2. You can fill out your Beginners Permit Application online and print it, or grab a copy when you arrive at the office.
  3. You will need to provide proof of identity, citizenship, birthdate, social security number, and proof of SC address
  4. Pass the vision test – the vision test is designed to test your eyesight and ensure you can safely operate a motor vehicle.
  5. Pass Written Test – the written test will test you on core driving concepts, traffic laws and road signs throughout the state of South Carolina. It includes 30 questions and you must answer 24 correctly for a passing score of 80%.

While this test can be difficult for most people, it doesn’t have to be. Our state-of-the-art driver’s education course includes a summarized driver’s manual, South Carolina permit practice tests, and a gamified system to keep you engaged while learning.

  1. The SC beginner’s permit fee is $2.50 payable by cash, check, and credit/debit card. You will be charged an extra $1 + 1.7% fee for payments made by card.

Beginner’s Permit Restrictions

  • Drivers can only operate a motor vehicle from 6 am to midnight with a licensed passenger who is 21 years or older
  • Drivers can operate a motor vehicle from 6 am to midnight with a parent or legal guardian

If you want to learn more about the next phase in the licensing process, we recommend that you read our ultimate SC driver’s license guide.

That’s It!

That’s everything you need to know about getting your driving permit in South Carolina. If you need any help studying for your upcoming knowledge or driving exams, then Zutobi is the perfect study resource with a summarized handbook, SC practice tests, and a gamified learning experience.

Take our full course with tests and theory

550+ exam-like questions

All you need to ace your test

Perfect for first-timers, renewals and senior citizens

Ace your DMV test, guaranteed