Riding the motorcycle is one of the most freeing things you can do. It is a fun and exciting activity, especially when you feel the wind on your face. However, like the other vehicles, you cannot simply drive your motorcycle without a license. If you are from Tennessee planning to get your motorcycle license soon, you might want to learn more about how the process goes in the state.

Where You Can Apply

You can apply for a motorcycle license at any full-service Driver Services Center location found in the state of Tennessee. The requirements you need to prepare will vary depending on your age. If you want to have a good chance of passing the application, consider reviewing the driver and motorcycle handbook.

Types of License Available

Motorcycles have different classifications in Tennessee. Here is a quick list of the different available driving license credentials you may choose from:

  • Class P-M or Motorcycle Learner Permit: It is the license that allows you to practice driving a motorcycle. Only people aged 15 and up can get this license.
  • Class M or Motorcycle Only License: Get this license if you do not wish to operate other vehicles other than your motorcycle. This license is only for motorcycles with an engine of 126 cc or more.
  • Class M Limited or Motor-Driven Scooter License: This license is exclusively for those who drive a two-wheeled or three-wheeled vehicle with an engine size smaller than Class M’s requirements—at least 51 to 125 cc.
  • Motorcycle-Secondary License: This is the license to get if you already have a license to drive regular vehicles and want to get the second license to operate your motorcycle.
  • Class XM or Temporary Motorcycle License: This license is perfect for motorcycle drivers only temporarily in the US. You would need to present documents to serve as proof for this.

Steps for Getting a Motorcycle License in Tennessee

  • As soon as you turn 15, you can immediately apply for a Class P-M license and start learning how to ride a motorcycle.
  • Once you turn 16 and up, you may proceed with the next steps, such as finishing the 50 hours required driving practice and passing the vision, knowledge, and skills test. Those with a regular driver’s license could skip the latter.
  • Before you can apply for your license in Tennessee, you need to take the state’s MREP or Motorcycle Rider Education Program. This course includes safe riding techniques, laws and safety equipment requirements, and other essential knowledge about driving the vehicle in the state. If you are already a licensed holder and decide to take this course, they will issue you with a certificate to skip the written examination.
  • Once you complete the step as mentioned earlier, you can finally go to any Department of Safety office and apply for a motorcycle license.

The Requirements to Prepare

As mentioned earlier, the requirements would vary depending on your age, but here are the general requirements they would ask you to present:

  • Valid ID
  • Proof of your citizenship
  • If you are a foreigner, proof of legal presence in the US
  • Proof of residency (two documents needed)
  • Filled-out motorcycle license application
  • Certification stating that you finished 50 hours of riding practice

Check the other specifics of your requirements from this site.


Like other vehicles, driving motorcycles can be dangerous. You need to be equipped and responsible enough, have enough practice, and be knowledgeable about the laws and practices of motorcycle riding to get your motorcycle license. Not following the state’s requirements and rules may lead to fines or jail time. Make sure that you take every step seriously and drive safely.

Once you successfully get your motorcycle license, your next step is to find the best beginner motorcycles out there. The Beginner Riders blog is here to give you the information you need to know about motorcycles and riding them. Feel free to check out our blog today for more related articles!