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L-Plate and P-Plate Restrictions Around Australia

Learn about the restrictions that apply to L-plate and P-plate drivers in your state or territory right here with Savvy.
Published on June 15th, 2020
  Written by 
Thomas Perrotta
Thomas Perrotta is the managing editor of Savvy. Throughout his time at the company, Thomas has specialised in personal finance, namely car, personal and small loans, although he has also written on topics ranging from mortgages to business loans to banking and more. Thomas graduated from the University of Adelaide with a Bachelor of Media, majoring in journalism, and has previously had his work published in The Advertiser.
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Bill Tsouvalas

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Bill Tsouvalas
Bill Tsouvalas is the managing director and a key company spokesperson at Savvy. As a personal finance expert, he often shares his insights on a range of topics, being featured on leading news outlets including News Corp publications such as the Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun, Fairfax Media publications such as the Australian Financial Review, the Seven Network and more. Bill has over 15 years of experience working in the finance industry and founded Savvy in 2010 with a vision to provide affordable and accessible finance options to all Australians. He has built Savvy from a small asset finance brokerage into a financial comparison website which now attracts close to 2 million Aussies per year and was included in the BRW’s Fast 100 in 2015 as one of the fastest-growing companies in the country. He’s passionate about helping Australians make financially savvy decisions and reviews content across the brand to ensure its accuracy. You can follow Bill on LinkedIn.
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Whether you’re getting behind the wheel of a car for the first time on your L-plates or have just moved up to unsupervised driving on your P-plates, it’s crucial to have a grasp of not only general road rules but also those which apply specifically to you. These vary by state and territory, so you can find out all about the restrictions where you live based on your licence type right here with Savvy!

Australia

Several laws apply across the board to drivers with learner and provisional licences in Australia. These are:

  • You must not have any alcohol in your system while operating a vehicle
  • You must display an L-plate or P-plate sign on your car where required
  • You must not use your mobile phone while operating a vehicle (although hands-free usage may be allowed in some cases)

Australian Capital Territory

L-platers

  • Speed limit: up to the posted speed limit
  • Towing: no trailer towing permitted beyond a Gross Vehicle Mass (GVM) of 750kg
  • Mobile phone usage: no usage permitted
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

P-platers

  • Speed limit: up to the posted speed limit
  • Passenger limit: while on P1 licence, no more than one passenger between 11:00pm and 5:00am from 16 to 22 years old (unless for employment or education purposes, with family members not included)
  • Towing: no trailer towing permitted beyond a Gross Vehicle Mass (GVM) of 750kg
  • Mobile phone usage: no usage permitted
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

New South Wales

L-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 90km/h
  • Towing: no towing permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: no usage permitted
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

P-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 90km/h (P1) or 100km/h (P2)
  • Passenger limit: while on P1 licence and under 25, no more than one passenger between 11:00pm and 5:00am under 21 years old (unless for employment or education purposes)
  • Towing: no towing permitted beyond a GVM of 250kg (P1)
  • Mobile phone usage: no usage permitted
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicles with power to tare mass ratios of over 130kW per tonne, a modified engine requiring engineer approval or other high-performance vehicles listed in the restricted vehicle database

Northern Territory

L-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 80km/h
  • Towing: permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: no usage permitted
  • Restricted vehicles: vehicles with a visual display unit (VDU) or television visible to you or other drivers on the road

P-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 100km/h
  • Passenger limit: no passenger limit
  • Towing: permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: no usage permitted
  • Restricted vehicles: vehicles with a visual display unit (VDU) or television visible to you or other drivers on the road

Queensland

L-platers

  • Speed limit: up to the posted speed limit
  • Towing: permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: no usage permitted
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

P-platers

  • Speed limit: up to the posted speed limit
  • Passenger limit: while on P1 licence and under 25, no more than one passenger between 11:00pm and 5:00am under 21 years old (excluding immediate family members)
  • Towing: permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: hands-free functions, wireless headsets and mobile handsets on loudspeaker are permitted for P2 licence holders and P1 licence holders aged 25 or over
  • Restricted vehicles: vehicles deemed high-powered by the Queensland Government

South Australia

L-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 100km/h
  • Towing: trailers, caravans, boats and horse floats can be towed
  • Mobile phone usage: no usage permitted
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

P-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 100km/h
  • Passenger limit: while on P1 licence and under 25, no more than one passenger between 16 and 20 years old (excluding immediate family members and unless a qualified supervising driver is next to you)
  • Towing: trailers, caravans, boats and horse floats can be towed
  • Mobile phone usage: making or receiving a phone call is permitted for P2 licence holders only, provided the phone is secured in a mounting device, accessed remotely (such as via Bluetooth) or with a wired or wireless headset
  • Restricted time: while on P1 licence and under 25, you mustn’t drive between the hours of 12:00am and 5:00am
  • Restricted vehicles: vehicles deemed high-powered by the South Australian Government (drivers under 25 years of age only)

Tasmania

L-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 90km/h
  • Towing: no towing permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: no usage permitted
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

P-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 100km/h (P1) or the posted speed limit (P2)
  • Passenger limit: while on P1 licence and under 25, no more than one passenger between 16 and 21 years old (excluding immediate family and a spouse or partner you live with and other exemptions)
  • Towing: permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: hands-free or speaker mode (P2 only)
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

Victoria

L-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 90km/h
  • Towing: no towing permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: phones or tablets in an appropriate mounted device can be used for navigation and audio (provided it’s set up beforehand), as well as play audio via a wearable device such as a smartwatch or smartglasses
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

P-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 100km/h (P1) or the posted speed limit (P2)
  • Passenger limit: while on P1 licence, no more than one passenger between 16 and 22 years old (excluding spouses, domestic partners, siblings and step-siblings and other exemptions)
  • Towing: towing not permitted for P1 licence holders unless you’re with a fully licenced driver or your towing is for employment or for agricultural purposes
  • Mobile phone usage: phones or tablets in an appropriate mounted device can be used for navigation and audio (provided it’s set up beforehand), as well as play audio via a wearable device such as a smartwatch or smartglasses
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicles with power to tare mass ratios of over 130kW per tonne, a modified engine to increase performance or another probationary prohibited vehicle listed in the probationary vehicles database

Western Australia

L-platers

  • Speed limit: up to 100km/h
  • Towing: permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: calls can be made or answered if your phone is mounted or can be used without touching it
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

P-platers

  • Speed limit: up to the posted speed limit
  • Passenger limit: no passenger limit
  • Towing: permitted
  • Mobile phone usage: calls can be made or answered if your phone is mounted or can be used without touching it
  • Restricted time: you mustn’t drive between the hours of 12:00am and 5:00am during the first six months of holding your provisional licence (travelling to and from school or to, from and for your employment by the shortest practicable route is permitted)
  • Restricted vehicles: no vehicle restrictions

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