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Driving Licence (DL): Types of licences, categories of vehicles for which they are issued in India explained

Tulika Tandon

As soon as an adolescent turns 18 in India, the adrenaline in his/her body rushes to drive his/her own vehicle. The first thing the parents say at that time is "Get your licence, then drive." It is essential to get the driving licence or DL to drive on roads in the country. 

You go to a driving school to learn how to drive and then after passing a theory and practical test in the RTO office you get your learner's permit. If you are thinking, after such a struggle you did not manage to get your license, you must know that learners permit is also a type of license.

So, after the struggle of learning how to drive and park safely the Government gives you some time to get adept at the road rules and the traffic. It is essential to have a license to drive legally in any country and this article informs you about the licences types and requirements.  

Licence class and categories of vehicles in India:

Take a look at the license class and the vehicles associated with it. This is particularly valid for India only. 

Licence Class

Vehicle Type

MC 50cc

Vehicles that have an engine capacity of 50cc or less than that.


Vehicles like jeep and motor cars fall under the Light Motor Vehicle Category but these are of non-transport class.


Vehicles without gears fall under this category like scooters and mopeds.


Vehicles like motorcycles with gears whose engine capacity is of 50CC or more.


Vehicles like motorcycles both with and without gear fall under this category.


Vehicles like trailers, larger trucks, and other similar vehicles used for transport of goods fall under the category of HGMV.


Vehicles that runs for commercial purpose and has an All India Permit to carry passengers falls under the HPMV category.

Types of Driving Licences in India: 

Driving is an essential requirement of the youth of the day. In order to commute one can not always depend on the public conveyances. It is a car or a bike one must know how to ride so that in the time of emergencies the needs can be met with. Driving legally requires a license. Here's the list of types of licenses provided in India and generally across the world. 

One must visit the RTO to obtain the same. Take a look below. 

Learners Licence:

Before obtaining the permanent license from the Government Authorities, the person is given the learners permit or learners license. This is authenticated by the Road Transport Authority. The validity of the license is the same in various countries, that is 6 months. This is the time provided to a driver to brush up his/her driving skills. 

The driver is expected to learn how to drive properly during this very time limit by the Government. In this time duration, the learner is expected to be accompanied by a mature driver who is an adult. 

Permanent Licence:

This license is provided to the driver after the period of learner's permit that is 6 months is over. The RTO then issues a permanent license to the driver. To obtain this type of license the candidate needs to be 18 years of age and must also clear his/her driving exam arranged by the RTO. This license is issued for private vehicles such as cars, bikes and other categories of light vehicles. 

Commercial Driving Licence:

This category of license is to give the authority to the driver to drive heavy vehicles. These vehicles may include passenger goods delivering vehicles like trucks. The candidates need to have cleared their class 8th exam essentially to obtain this license. The commercial drivers are not just accountable for their own safety but also of others. 

International Driving Permit:

The driver seeking this license is looking to drive a vehicle in a foreign land other than India. The issuance of this license means that he/she may be able to rent a vehicle in another country and drive it. The candidates must have a permanent license to obtain these. One can get this kind of license only for one year at a time and needs to apply again for every time. No renewal process is done in this. 

These were the types of Driving Licences in India.  Now a days the process has been eased and the people can apply for the licences online as well. 

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Can I have two driving licences in India?

No, this was an issue reported in the past which is why the chip cards were introduced by the transport department. Thus in India if one has two licences they would be fined.

What is the driving licence application fee in Delhi in 2021?

The driving licence fee after revision in 2021 is INR 200.

How can I get a driving licence online?

You need to visit the government transport website for example in Delhi you need to visit and fill the application. Schedule the test using the application number generated and clear it to get the license.

I am 16 years old. Can I get a driving licence if I know how to drive?

No, in India one needs to be 18 years of age to get a permanent licence. That is the legal age to drive in the country.

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