Learner and provisional license laws and rules around Australia

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As a learner or provisional driver, you’re expected to comply with all relevant rules and restrictions on the road. However, with rules and restrictions changing as you progress through your L, P1, and P2 licence, it can be hard to keep track of exactly which rules to follow.

Each state and territory in Australia has different laws and regulations that learner and provisional drivers must comply with. Unfortunately, these laws are often very different from each other, especially P1 and P2 licence rules. But don’t despair; we’ve compiled this handy guide of rules and regulations in each state and territory, so you can brush up before your next test or interstate journey.

Australia-wide L and P plate laws

While most L and P plate laws differ between locations, there are two laws that apply Australia wide. Learner and provisional drivers must:


NSW regulations are fairly restrictive, especially NSW red P plate rules and green P plate rules. When in NSW, you’ll need to observe the following:


Queensland has complex P1 licence rules, especially around passenger restrictions. When in QLD, you’ll need to observe the following:


Drivers under the age of 21 in Victoria hold their provisional licence longer than any other state, for a total of 4 years. The state also has some of the harshest P1 restrictions. When in VIC, you’ll need to observe the following:


Western Australia has fairly relaxed laws for learner and provisional drivers. Aside from the Australia wide laws, there’s only one restriction to be aware of that could catch you out if you’re holidaying interstate. If you are on your P plates, you’re not permitted to drive between midnight and 5am for the first six months of your P1 licence. There is an exception however for those driving to, or for, work.


South Australian L and P1 laws are much more restrictive than P2. When in SA, you’ll need to observe the following:


New restrictions for provisional drivers have just been implemented in the ACT. When in the ACT, you’ll need to observe the following:


The NT has few restrictions for learner and provisional drivers. When in NT, you’ll need to observe the following:


Tasmanian provisional and learner licence laws are currently fairly straightforward, however they are due to change in December 2020. When in TAS, you’ll need to observe the following:

The information in this article is current as of the 13th of April 2020. Laws and penalties may have changed since this article was created.

The information above comes from the following sources:

Transport for NSW, Licence conditions, viewed April 2020, https://roadsafety.transport.nsw.gov.au/stayingsafe/drivers/youngdrivers/licence-conditions/index.html

VicRoads, P1 & P2 probationary licence restrictions, viewed April 2020, https://www.vicroads.vic.gov.au/licences/your-ps/p1-and-p2-probationary-licence-restrictions

VicRoads, Restrictions on learner drivers, viewed April 2020, https://www.vicroads.vic.gov.au/licences/your-ls/restrictions-on-learner-drivers

Mylicence.sa.gov.au, Provisional Driver’s Licence (P1&P2) conditions and laws, viewed April 2020, https://mylicence.sa.gov.au/the-driving-companion/provisional-conditions

Western Australia Government, Novice Drivers, viewed April 2020, https://www.transport.wa.gov.au/licensing/novice-drivers.asp

Canberra Times, Young Canberra drivers face new restrictions from January 1, viewed April 2020, https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6560809/young-canberra-drivers-face-new-restrictions-from-january-1/

NT Government, Road Users Handbook, viewed April 2020, https://nt.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0015/263031/section-2-licences-road-users-handbook.pdf

Transport Tas, Novice, viewed April 2020, https://www.transport.tas.gov.au/licensing/demerits_and_offences/novice_penalties_and_case_management

Queensland Government, Provisional Licence Restrictions, viewed April 2020, https://www.qld.gov.au/transport/licensing/driver-licensing/applying/provisional/restrictions


This article has been prepared by Allianz Australia Insurance Limited ABN 15 000 122 850 AFSL 234708 (“Allianz”). Information contained in this article is accurate as at 13th of April 2020 and may be subject to change. In some cases information has been provided to us by third parties and while that information is believed to be accurate and reliable, its accuracy is not guaranteed in any way. Any opinions expressed constitute our views at the time of issue and are subject to change. Neither Allianz, nor its employees or directors give any warranty of accuracy or accept responsibility for any loss or liability incurred by you in respect of any error, omission or misrepresentation in this article.