Driver’s license (DL) code B is one of the nine (9) new alphanumeric category codes used by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) in place of the old LTO restriction codes. It allows you to drive a vehicle of a certain type. According to the law, the DL code B is for motorized vehicles with up to 8 seats and whose weight does not exceed 5000kg.
When you successfully get a driver’s license, it’s important to know which types of motor vehicles you’re allowed to drive. This is where DL codes come in. Depending on the DL code stated in your license, you may be allowed to drive a certain motor vehicle. But, if you’re caught driving a type of vehicle that you’re not licensed to drive, you can face hefty LTO fines, penalties and charges.
What is DL Code B?
Driver’s License Code B essentially gives one the permission to drive passenger cars with up to eight (8) seats and a Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) of not more than 5000 kg. This category allows license holders with DL Code B to drive hatchbacks, coupes, sedans, and SUVs.
DL Code B
Under the DL Code B is category code M1 which refers to all vehicles with fewer than eight (8) seats and a Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) of not exceeding 3500 kg.
DL Code B1
Additionally, there is also the Driving License Code B1, a category code reserved for those with professional license who drive passenger vans or jeepneys. This includes all types of jeepneys used for passenger transportation. It covers all passenger van models like Honda Odyssey, Toyota Hiace, Ford Transit, etc. as well as the popular mass transport jeepney model.
DL Code B1 also corresponds to the vehicle category code M2, which includes passenger vehicles with a seating capacity of more than eight and a gross vehicle weight not exceeding 5000 kg.
DL code B2
Lastly, there’s also the Driving License Code B2, an LTO DL category code required to drive light commercial vehicles including commercial four-wheeled vehicles used for cargo transportation. Some vehicle models under this category include Suzuki Carry, Hyundai H100, Isuzu Travis, and Mitsubishi L300.
The DL Code B2 corresponds to the vehicle category code N1, a subcategory which refers to vehicles used for transporting goods with a maximum gross vehicle weight not exceeding 3500kg.
Can I Ride a Motorcycle with DL Code B
If you are looking for a short answer, then the answer is No. A DL Code B on your driving license allows you to drive passenger cars, but not motorcycles. As we all know, the new Driver’s License Codes are very specific in the type of vehicle that can be legally operated per DL code. That said, if you need to legally drive either a motorcycle or a tricycle in the Philippines, or any kind of 2- or 3-wheeler, then you will need Code A or Code A1 printed on your license. Otherwise, you risk being apprehended and having your vehicle impounded.
What are DL Codes A and A1
To drive a motorcycle legally in the Philippines, you’ll need either DL Code A or A1.
DL Code A
DL Code A is a driving license code specifically for motorcycles. The code covers both motorcycles with either manual, semi-automatic, and automatic transmission as well as most motorcycle models including Mio, Aerox, NMax, Smash, and Barako, among others.
DL Code A covers vehicle category codes L1, L2, and L3, allowing them eligibility to drive two- and three-wheeled vehicles with a maximum design speed of below 50kph (for L1 and L2) and beyond 50 kph (for L3).
DL Code A1
Additionally, there is also the Driving License Code A1, a category code covers all three-wheeled motor vehicles, including motorcycles with sidecars, transport tricycles, and e-tricycles such as Bajaj Re, Yamaha Tricity4, and tuk-tuk (or bokyo). This DL code also covers four-wheeled vehicles with limited unladen mass and maximum design speed.
Licensees with DL Code A1 may also be eligible to drive and operate motor vehicles with the Vehicle Category Code L4, L5, L6, and L7. With these codes in the license, the licensee may drive and operate motorcycles with sidecar and with a maximum design speed under 50 kph, three-wheeled symmetrically arranged vehicles with a maximum design speed exceeding 50 kph, four-wheeled vehicles with unladen mass of not more than 350 kg and with a maximum design speed not exceeding 45 kph, and four-wheeled vehicles with unladen mass of not more than 550 kg and with a maximum design speed of not exceeding 45 kph, respectively.
What Does the DL Code Say About You
DL codes are alphanumeric codes indicated in an individual’s license. It is stated in the license regardless if it’s a Professional (PDL) or a Non-Professional Driver’s License (NPDL). DL codes tell the relevant authorities whether or not the license holder is authorized to drive and operate certain motor vehicles. The codes can also tell the authorities if the driver is operating a vehicle he shouldn’t be touching. These things and more may lead to getting tags and violations as well as hefty LTO fines and impounding. More than that, however, getting caught driving vehicles you aren’t supposed to drive may make you lose the opportunity to renew to a DL with a 10-year validity period.
Where to Find the DL Codes
Unlike the old licenses where the old restriction code is found on the front side of the license card, the new DL codes can be found at the back of your driver’s license, next to the transmission and condition codes.
For your reference, here are some important tips to remember:
- The new DL Code system is based on the European and United Kingdom version.
- Drivers who are approved of driving a manual transmission (MT) vehicle are allowed to also drive automatic, whereas those approved for automatic transmission (AT) can not drive manual.
- Drivers with licenses issued by any ASEAN member-state governments are allowed to drive in the Philippines.
- Foreigners may use a driver’s license issued in their home country in the Philippines for a maximum of 90 days.
- The DL Code B is not the DL code you need to drive a motorcycle of any type without facing legal repercussions later on.
Video: The new LTO DL codes in the Philippines 2023
Learn more about the new LTO DL codes by watching this video from MamiZang Vlogs:
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
To help you out, here are some common question and answers related to DL Code B.
1. Do you need a separate license to drive a motorcycle in the Philippines?
No. If you intend to drive both a motorcycle and a car, you don’t need separate licenses, you just need to add more DL codes. Anyway, getting a license in the Philippines for either cars or motorcycles is largely the same deal. You n
Simply need to take a driving course, apply for a student permit, log your hours, and then head over to the LTO and claim your license.
2. Can I drive a motorcycle with a car license in the Philippines?
No. Unless your driver’s license bears the proper DL Codes, you can not rent or drive a 125cc or even a 110cc scooter in the Philippines with your driving license. Your license must have DL code A1 for small scooters and big motorcycles in the Philippines or other Asian countries.
3. I have an American driving license for a car, but I do not have a motorcycle driving license. Can I drive a 110cc scooter in the Philippines?
No. Your license needs to bear DL code A or A1 lest your license lands you a violation. Your foreign driving license is valid for up to 90 days, too, but make sure to bring your international driving license with you since it has translations.
4. Can I still get a driver’s license even if I have a disease?
Yes. Aside from the DL codes, the LTO also rolled out new condition codes to identify the driver’s conditions and help them drive safely, depending on their needs and ability to operate a vehicle, as judged by the LTO driver evaluator. While the old condition codes used letters, (A, B, C, D, E), the new condition codes use numbers (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) to signify disabilities or impairment.
5. What is Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW)?
The gross vehicle weight (GVW) refers to the motor vehicle’s maximum operating weight as specified by the car’s manufacturer. On average, tha ppe GVW for most passenger vehicles out in the market is 1,814 kg.
6. Can I operate vehicles for hire if my driver’s license has Condition Codes?
No. According to the LTO, license holders with conditions 2, 3, 4, or 5 are not allowed to operate for-hire/public utility vehicles or commercial vehicles unless they secure written permission from a qualified medical specialist.
7. Can manual drivers drive automatic vehicles?
If the restriction indicates “MT,” the licensee can operate both manual and automatic transmissions. However, if the restriction is set to “AT,” then they may only drive automatic transmissions.
In essence, drivers whose licenses bear the Driving License Code (DL Code) B may not drive a motorcycle. The case is true unless it includes a DL code A or A1. For foreigners, they can use their license, provided that the license restriction includes big motorcycles and tricycles or small four-wheeled vehicles. Driving without the proper DL codes may mean high fines or other forms of violations and penalties, so it’s best to avoid them.