How To Get a Vermont Motorcycle License

You have to have a valid driver's license with a motorcycle endorsement before you can drive a motorcycle in Vermont.
Written by Jasmine Kanter
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
Getting your Vermont driver's license is the first step to driving a motorcycle. After that, your motorcycle endorsement is one permit and several tests away!
Vermont car insurance
costs aren’t going down, prompting some drivers to save money by switching from a car to a motorcycle. Not only is it cheaper, but a bike is a great way to see the Green Mountain State!
, the trustworthy insurance super app, has the advice you need if you want to explore the road on three wheels or less. Find out how to get your Vermont motorcycle endorsement and
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Do you need a license to operate a motorcycle in Vermont?

Yes, you must be a licensed driver to drive a motor-driven cycle according to
23 V.S.A. 601
In this case, a motor-driven cycle is any motorcycle, scooter, or three-wheeled motorcycle with no more than three wheels touching the ground. A licensed driver is someone who holds a
Vermont motorcycle endorsement
on top of a state
driver’s license
. The license in question may be an
, or
commercial license
Vermont's Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)
issues all licenses and permits. Before getting a motorcycle endorsement, you’ll be required to:
  • Apply for a Vermont driver’s license
  • Apply for a motorcycle learner’s permit
  • Pass a written and skills test
Motorcycle drivers from out-of-state and abroad can cruise the highways as long as they have a valid license or international driving permit. The only requirement is the driver has to be at least 18 and visiting the country for less than a year.
MORE: Vermont REAL ID: what you need to know
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How to get a Vermont driver’s license or junior driver’s license

To apply for a motorcycle endorsement, you must have a valid driver's license, which involves getting a
learner’s permit
, passing a few tests, and paying license fees. For more details, check out Jerry’s guide to
Vermont driver’s license requirements

If you’re under 18

The minimum age to apply for a learner’s permit in Vermont is 15. If you’re underage, you'll need to complete some extra requirements to get your license. See the DMV’s
resources for teen drivers
to learn more.
Upon passing the tests and paying the fees, you’ll receive a
junior driver’s license
. It comes with more restrictions, but once you turn 18, it’ll become a full driver's license. But you don't need to wait until then to get a motorcycle endorsement—just keep reading!
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How to get a Vermont motorcycle learner’s permit

Once you have a Vermont driver's license (junior or otherwise), you can apply for a
motorcycle learner's permit
. Just like a vehicle learner's permit, it allows you to practice driving. Unlike a vehicle learner’s permit, however, you can take your motorcycle onto any public highwaywithout a supervising driver.
To get one, you'll need to take the
Vermont Motorcycle Awareness Program (VMAP)
course. After four hours of training, you'll get a learner's permit and can hit the streets. 
Can't make it to class? You can get your motorcycle learner's permit another way. Here’s how:
The best way to pass the test is to read the
Vermont Motorcycle Manual
. If you fail, you can try again, but it’ll cost you $9 per attempt. If you succeed, you can start driving right away! All you have to do is stick to daylight hours, stay passenger-free, and remain within Vermont. Breaking any one of these rules will result in your learner’s permit being voided.
Time to practice! Your permit expires in 120 days. It can only be renewed twice; if you don't pass your skills test or training course by then, you'll have to wait until one year after it expires

If you’re under 18

To get a motorcycle learner's permit, you need a junior driver's license and a
clean driving record
without any suspensions, revocations, or recalls in the last two years. If you started learning to drive at 15 and passed your road test promptly, the earliest you can apply for a motorcycle learner's permit is 16. As you're still a minor, you'll need a parent or guardian's permission to take a VMAP course, plus their signature on your permit application.
Don't forget to keep following your junior driver's license rules, too!
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How to get a Vermont motorcycle endorsement

After you get your motorcycle learner's permit, you can go ahead and get your motorcycle endorsement whenever you're ready.
The easiest way is to complete a
Basic Rider Course (BRC)
Experienced Rider License Waiver Course (IRCLW)
offered by the
Vermont Rider Education Program (VREP)
. If you pass either course, you can receive your endorsement without any further tests.
But if you can’t take a course or don’t want to, you can instead:
  • Make an appointment at your local DMV office
  • Show your identity documents
  • Pay a $32 fee and pass a
    written test
  • Pay a $19 fee and pass a
    road test
  • Pay a $3 motorcycle endorsement fee
The written test has 25 multiple-choicequestions. To pass, you need to answer at least 20 of them correctly. Again, your best study guide is the Vermont Motorcycle Manual. If you fail, you'll have to wait one day before retaking it (and paying again).
After passing the written test, you'll be able to take the road test, also known as the skills test. It requires a motorcycle that's safe, registered, and fully insured according to
Vermont car insurance laws
. You'll have to show that you know how to handle your bike, even if you have to make a quick stop or a swerve. Failing the skills test means you’ll have to wait one week before trying again.
If you pass both tests, you'll get a motorcycle endorsement added to your license for $3 a year. Congrats! Now you can drive a motorcycle in Vermont (or any other state) at any time of day and with passengers. Keep your newfound freedom by following
Vermont DUI laws
Vermont reckless driving

If you’re under 18

Minors can apply for a motorcycle endorsement without any extra requirements. You just need parental or legal guardian permission to take a BRC or IRCLW course with the VREP. 

If you drive a scooter

Driving a scooter in Vermont also requires a motorcycle endorsement. The requirements are the same, but to waive the knowledge and skills test, you’ll have to complete the VREP’s
Scooter Basic Rider Course (SBRC)
. After five hours of classroom training, 10 hours of on-scooter riding, a knowledge test, and a skills test, you'll have an endorsement.

If you drive a three-wheeled motorcycle

Driving a three-wheeled motorcycle in Vermont also requires a motorcycle endorsement. The requirements are nearly the same; you just have to complete a
3-Wheel Basic Rider Course (3WBRC)
to waive testing instead. Once you finish, you'll get a motorcycle endorsement that is restricted to three-wheeled motorcycles.

How to save on car and motorcycle insurance in Vermont

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Yes. Motorcycle riders have to pass both a knowledge and skills test to get an endorsement on their license. Enrolling in a state-approved basic rider course or intermediate rider course waives these requirements.
In Vermont, operating a motorcycle without a license is considered a traffic violation. You could also face a fine of up to $5,000 if it’s not your first conviction (and if your most recent conviction happened within two years).
No, Vermont doesn’t allow drivers to operate their motorcycles without purchasing the appropriate
liability insurance
. For a legally-compliant policy, you’ll need to stock up on $25,000 of
bodily injury liability
per person ($50,000 per accident) and $10,000 of
property damage liability
per accident. Uninsured motorist bodily coverage (with a provision for property damage) is also required.
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