What is the Allowed Age to Apply for a Non-Professional Driver’s License? 

The presence of an allowed age or age limits that the Land Transportation Office (LTO) has set for when applying for a Non-Professional License (NPDL) detail the given age a person has to be in order to apply for an NPDL. It was meant to regulate the opportunity to obtain a driver’s license. It’s a common practice among government offices and it applies not only towards licensing transactions. The youngest age is 17 years old for Filipino citizens who are applying for NPDL.

To prevent penalties, it is critical to ensure that you are of age to get a driver’s license before applying for one and driving any vehicle on the road. If you aren’t, then you won’t ever be legally permitted to drive yet. Putting up such limits not only helps you avoid unnecessary trouble later on, but it also gives you time to get your driving skills certified and to protect you and the others. To apply for a driver’s license at the LTO, you should first know “What is the age limit to get a driver’s license in the Philippines.”

What is the Age Requirement to Get a Driver’s License in the Philippines? 

Regardless if you are a Filipino citizen or a foreigner in the Philippines, you should already know that you should abide by the rules on the age limits before applying for a.license. If you don’t, then you must know that if you ignore the given age a person has to be in order to apply for different types of driver’s license, you may face some serious legal repercussions and even penalties. After all, this age limit is mandated by the government, and is usually the minimum age limit. 

Age limits can also apply to restriction of minors’ access to movies, video games, tobacco, alcohol, incur debt, and enter into marriage. Other important age limits include the age of consent, criminal age of responsibility and the age of majority that among other things determine the minimum age for voting in political elections. Both lower and upper age limits can restrict what a person can and cannot do. 

Types Of Driver’s Licenses In The Philippines

Before we delve into the age limitations of each license, you must know that there are three driver’s license classes in the Philippines: the Student Permit, Non-Professional, and Professional type. You can check them better here:

Student Permit

A Student Permit is an obligatory paper required in order to get other licenses. Individuals who own this paper can handle their vehicles, but only if a Non-Professional or Professional driver’s license holder is present to supervise their driving skill. Besides, this paper has a short validity of one year without modifying, revising, or renewing, which means you must get other types of licenses after a year.

Non-Professional Licenses

Individuals who own this license card are allowed to handle 4,500 GVW private vehicles with a manual or automatic gearbox on their own.

Professional Licenses

Professional licenses not only allow one to drive a private vehicle, but these individuals can also drive public vehicles such as buses, coaches, trailer tractor trucks, etc., with a gross vehicle weight of more than 4,500.

What Is The Age Limit To Get A Driver’s License In The Philippines?

Now that you understand the differences among the different license types, then you can understand why the Philippine government has varying age limits or requirement for each one. Let’s find out!

Student Permit 

While there is no regulation about the maximum allowable or ceiling age to apply for Student License, it has a minimum allowable or floor age. For a student permit from the LTO, you must pass your 16th birthday first before you can apply for the Student Permit if you are a Filipino. The law also requires foreigners to be at least 18 years old, no matter what nationality they own. Additionally, they have to stay in the Philippines for one month. 

Many people with an expired driver’s license for above ten years must take the LTO exams for this paper before they can move up and get another license.

Non-Professional Driver’s License (NPDL)

As mentioned above, all individuals must apply for a non-professional driver’s license before the one-year of owning the Student Permit is up. Hence, the youngest age is 17 years old for Filipino citizens who are applying for NPDL.

Foreigners, on the other hand, may only attend the NPDL test at the age of 18. Why, you ask? Well, the law requires people to own the Student Permit above thirty days before the NPDL application only.

Professional Driver’s License

To secure a professional driver’s license, you must be at least 18 years old, regardless if you are a Filipino citizen or a foreigner. Suppose the NPDL applicants have to hold a Student Permit above thirty days. In that case, the professional applicants must hold an NPDL for a minimum period of six months or one year, depending on the license class they belong to.

Other Requirements to Get an LTO Driver’s License

With different license applications come different documentary requirements. Besides the age limit and the period of the license holder, the LTO regulations also ask for other requirements related to the limit of traffic violations, medical proof of physical and mental condition, reading and writing ability, and some course certificates, etc.

The applicant must also fill out an application form, supply original and photocopies of personal documents and a valid ID copy, or, in some cases, present the written consent of a student’s guardian or parents if the applicant is under 18 years old. 

The LTO fees is also a factor you must know before applying. It charges about P317.00 to get the Student Permit and about P820.00 for NPDL and Professional Driver’s license applications.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

For your reference, here are some commonly asked questions and answers about the allowed age for applying for a driver’s license:

1. What is the age limit to get a driver’s license in the Philippines for foreigners? 

Foreigners in the Philippines who are intent on applying for a driver’s license must be at least 18 years old and above to apply for one. Like the Filipinos, they must start with the Student Permit as well and hold it for at least thirty days before getting to the next level – the NPDL. They can apply for a professional one six months or one year after getting the NPDL. That said, foreigners are also allowed to apply for all three driver’s license types within a year, provided that they can satisfy all the requirements.

2. Is 18 years old the age limit to get a Driver’s License?

No. The age limit for driver’s licenses changes depending on the nationality and the license type you are applying for. If you are a Filipino citizen, you are allowed to secure a Student Permit at 16, an NPDL at 17, and a PDL at 18. On the other hand, it’s a must for foreigners to pass their 18th birthday to get ready for these licenses.

3. Can a 70-year-old get a driver’s license?

Yes. In the past, 70-year-old individuals were considered weak and unable to control the vehicles, so they can no longer secure driver’s licenses as they might cause harm to other people. Since the medical system has developed and the living standard has improved, people are physically and mentally healthy to drive safely. As such, the older people are now allowed to drive, except if they catch some medical conditions related to heart disease, nerve, or mental which may affect their driving skills. Additionally, they must attend eyesight checks every three years.


Now that the age limit to get a driver’s license with different classifications in the Philippines is clear, you’d want to pay attention to these details if you don’t want to pay a fine of up to P3,000.00 for misrepresenting your age during license application. In case you meet the standards regarding the age limit, you may also want to read on the process to get an actual drivers license.

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