Please note: We can't answer specific questions about P plate restrictions or licence laws. If you have a specific question, contact VicRoads using their Message Us page.
Once you've got your probationary licence, you can hit the road all by yourself.
Don't get too cocky though - new drivers are statistically more likely to have car accidents. Stay safe on the roads by knowing all the rules and restrictions that apply to you.
P1 vs P2
There are two kinds of probationary licence in Victoria:
- P1 (red P plate), which lasts for at least the first 12 months of probationary driving
- P2 (green P plate), which normally starts 12 months from when you get your P1 licence and lasts for at least three years
There are different rules and restrictions that apply to P1 (red) and P2 (green) P-platers - see the "Rules and restrictions for P-platers" section below for an overview.
If you're found guilty of any driving offences, or you break any of the rules for P1 or P2 drivers, you may have your P1 or P2 licence period extended as part of any penalties that are applied to you.
Rules and restrictions for P-platers
Certain rules and restrictions apply while you're on your Ps. Some only apply to P1 drivers and some apply to both P1 and P2 drivers.
Displaying your P plates
It's up to you whether you decide to buy, borrow or make your P plates. The main thing is that you display them correctly when you're driving. Requirements for P plates in Victoria are listed on the VicRoads Displaying P Plates page, including:
- How you need to display them
- What they need to look like
Peer passenger restriction for P1 drivers
A P1 driver isn't allowed to carry more than one "peer passenger" when driving. A "peer passenger" is a person who is between 16 and 22 who is NOT the P1 driver's:
- Spouse or domestic partner
- Sibling or step-sibling
For example, if you're on your P1s you can drive your brother and your sister around (no matter what their age), as well as one other person between 16 or 22. You can't, however, drive three of your mates around (unless two of them are over 22).
For more information, check out the VicRoads Probationary licence restrictions page.
Other rules and restrictions for P1 drivers
As well as the peer passenger restriction, the following restrictions also apply to P1 drivers:
- You're not allowed to tow anything (unless you're doing it for work or you're under instruction)
- If your licence is cancelled or suspended as a result of a traffic offence, you're only allowed to carry one passenger in total (whatever their age) for the rest of your P1 period (there are exceptions to this rule)
Rules and restrictions that apply to P1 AND P2 drivers
The following rules and restrictions apply to both P1 AND P2 probationary drivers:
- You must display your P-plates at all times when driving
- You have to have your licence on you whenever you're driving
- No mobile phone use (hands free or hand-held) or messaging of any kind is allowed
- You can't have any alcohol or illicit drugs in your body
- Any suspension, drink driving offence without licence cancellation or suspension, or drug driving offence will result in an extension of your P1 or P2 period
- You will lose your licence if you get five demerit points in a year, or 12 over a three-year period
- You can't drive high-powered vehicles - check out the VicRoads prohibited vehicles page for details and definitions
- If you got your licence driving an automatic car, you aren't allowed to drive a manual car until you get a full licence or pass another drive test in a manual car.
For a full overview of restrictions on P-plate drivers, check out the VicRoads P plate restrictions page.
Getting your full licence
There are two ways to get your full licence after you've successfully finished your P2 period.
- If the expiry date on your licence is after your probationary end date it automatically becomes a full licence from midnight on that end date - you don't need to get a new one until your current licence expires
- If the expiry date on your licence and your probationary end date are the same you have to renew your licence before getting a full driver's licence (VicRoads will send you a renewal notice)
If your probationary licence has an automatic (A) condition, the restriction will be removed when your probationary period finishes, and either:
- A new unrestricted licence will be sent to you automatically
- The new, full licence you pay for won't have the restriction
None of the P1 or P2 restrictions apply to you once you've got your full licence. You're still bound by the road rules and responsibilities that apply to all Victorian drivers, though.
Info about safety issues on the road, including road safety, safe driving speeds and vehicle safety.
VicRoads - Licences
Information about licence and driving related topics including fees, types of licences, getting your Ls and getting your Ps.
TAC - Safe Driving
A range of tools to help you stay safe on the road.