Classes of Licence & Eligibility

R-N: Any 50cc moped not capable of exceeding 60kph; Minimum age 16 years. No permit or test necessary if you already hold any class of WA driver's licence.

R-E: Any motorcycle not exceeding 250cc; Minimum age 17 years.

R: Any motorcycle; To qualify you must have held R-E class licence for at least one year.

(Note: If you pass the practical test on a motorcycle with an automatic transmission, your licence will restrict you to riding automatic motorcycles in that class only (eg. scooters) .

The motorcycle theory test

To obtain a Learner's permit for an R-E Class you will need to pass a theory test. If you already hold any class of WA driver's licence then the test consists of only 15 multiple choice questions relating specifically to motorcycle riding. Although the questions are largely commonsense it doesn't hurt to study the relevant pages in the "Drive Safe" book (available for free from any Licensing Centre).

If you do not currently hold any class of WA driver's licence then you will need to also need to sit both the 15 question motorcycle learners test and also the road rules test consisting of 30 multiple choice questions. In this case you should definitely obtain a copy of the "Drive Safe" book and study the road rules.

The motorcycle learner's permit

This is available for a fee from any Licensing Centre. For the R-E class licence you will need to first sit and pass the theory test (see above). You will need to fill out a form and state any medical conditions that may affect your riding; and any traffic or criminal convictions that you have. You will also need to pass an eyesight test. If you are under 18 you will need a letter of consent from a parent or legal guardian.

Learning to ride a motorcycle

Once you have obtained a learner's permit you may take riding lessons and practise on a public road (with certain restrictions) provided you are accompanied at all times by an instructor - either on another bike or on the pillion seat (or in a sidecar). You must display 'L' plate at all times.

The instructor can be either:
  • a licensed instructor for the class of licence for which you have a learner's permit; or
  • any person who holds a current licence for the class of licence for which you have a learner's permit and who has held that class of licence (or higher) for at least 4 years.
(Note that for the R-E class you may only ride a motorcycle with an engine capacity up to and including 250cc.)

For the R-N Class, the instructor can be any person who has held an R-N (moped) or C (car) licence for at least 2 years.

The motorcycle practical riding test

You can attempt the practical riding test at any time after obtaining the learners permit (there is no minimum period or number of lessons required). Make sure you are ready though as applicants who fail must wait a minimum of one month and pay for another assessment before they can have another go at the practical test.

The practical test will involve a 'quick stop' (also called an 'emergency' braking test), a demonstration of low speed balance and bike control skills, a hill park and hill take off as well as a 'road-craft' component (ie. an assessment of how safely you ride in the traffic).

Once you have passed the practical riding test

If you already hold any class of WA driver's licence and you have just passed the practical test for the R or RE class, your licence will be upgraded to include the new class.

If you do not hold any class of WA driver's licence and you have just passed the practical test for the R-N you will get a probationary licence for that class. If you have just passed the R-E class practical test, you will move onto the second stage of your learner's permit. You will be issued with a log book and will then need to gain further experience under supervision. You will also need to pass a computerised 'Hazard Perception Test' and be 17 years of age or older before you can be issued with an R-E class probabionary licence.