Starting Aug. 3, applicants must complete driving courses before applying with the LTO

Applicants of new student permits, new driver’s licenses and those who wish to change or add a restriction code to their existing license must now undergo the required driving seminar courses.

This announcement was made by the Land Transportation Office, effective August 3, 2020. Applicants for new driver's licenses, student permits, or change in restriction code must show proof that they've attended the seminar and have their certificate transmitted electronically to the LTO. Applicants that have not attended these seminars will be turned away.

These seminars can be as long as 15-hours for student permit applicants and 8-hours for new license applicants. The seminars have to be administered by LTO-accredited Driving Schools (DS), authorized driving school instructors/administrators, or LTO-Driver Education Centers (DEC).

Only applicants with completed driving course accepted starting Aug 3 – LTO  image

"We have already launched the new Land Transportation Management System (LTMS) in 24 offices as our way of adhering to the directive of [DOTr] Secretary Tugade to shift to digitalization of transactions," said LTO chief, Assistant Secretary, Edgar Galvante.

This is in accordance with Republic Act 10930 or the “Act Rationalizing and strengthening the policy regarding driver's license by extending the validity period of driver's licenses, and penalizing acts in violation of its issuance and application, amending for those purposes Section 23 of Republic Act 4136, as amended by Batas Pambansa Blg. 398 and Executive Order No. 1011, otherwise known as the Land Transportation and Traffic Code.”

The driving seminars were conceived in response to the President's call for more stringent driver education and license issuance. The agency has faced criticism over the number of drivers that acquired licenses from fixers but were not educated about our land’s traffic laws. Many believe this lack of education is the cause of undisciplined and reckless driving on the streets.

Driving Seminar

LTO: Driving seminar required for new applications starting Aug 3, 2020 image

To be certified, all applicants of student permits, new driver’s licenses and those applying for additional or a change of restriction codes (including foreign student permits and those with EXPIRED student permits), will need to attend a driving seminar. We detail how long each seminar is HERE.

For student permits, it's a 15-hour Theoretical Driving Course (TDC) which can be obtained at any of the LTO-accredited driving schools, authorized driving school instructors/administrators, and by LTO-Driver Education Centers (DECs) in LTO offices starting July 1, 2020.

For new driver’s license applicants, whether non-professional or professional, with student permits issued from August 3, 2020 onward, they will also be required to secure a Practical Driving Course (PDC) certificate. This spans 8-hours of hands-on driver training. It can also be obtained from any of the LTO- accredited driving schools, authorized driving school instructors/administrators, and from LTO-Driver Education Centers (DECs) in LTO offices.

Meanwhile, applicants for Additional Restriction Codes (RC) will also be required to secure their PDC certificates, which vary depending on the additional restriction code being applied for. For example, it the applicant needs an additional restriction code to drive a semi-truck (18-wheeler), the appropriate PDC shall have to be completed prior to the issuance of the additional RC.

“As we ready for the nationwide activation of this new system, I have directed all concerned regional offices and district offices to be fully equipped and ready to accept electronically-transmitted certificates, which are the prerequisite in securing driver’s licenses before August 3,” Asec. Galvante said.

The LTO earlier advised that it will be temporarily suspending the regular Student Permit applications beginning July 1, 2020. This is in preparation for the migration to the new system.