You have passed your driving test and can finally hit the road on your own.

Don’t get too confident though. Did you know that new drivers are statistically more likely to have car accidents. So make sure you stay safe on the roads by knowing all the rules and restrictions that apply to you.

There are two kinds of probationary licences in Victoria:

P1 (red P plate), This period begins once you pass your driving test if you are under the age of 21, and can last up to 12months. Your P1 licence automatically changes to a P2 licence once you turn 21 years of age. This probationary period may extend if you receive certain fines which incur a loss of demerit points and with driving suspensions for careless driving matters.

P2 (green P plate), This period begins once your P1 period is completed successfully and lasts for 3 years if no fines or suspensions extend it through the loss of demerit points or careless driving matters.

Certain rules and restrictions apply while you’re on your P’s. Some only apply to P1 drivers and some apply to both P1 and P2 drivers.

If you’re found guilty of any driving offences, or you break any of the rules for P1 or P2 drivers, you may have your P1 or P2 licence period extended as part of any penalties that are applied to you.

Displaying your P plates

Displaying your P plates is a MUST for both P1 and P2 drivers. You must display them at all times and must be visible from a distance of 20 metres from the front and back of the vehicle.

Rules and restrictions for P1 drivers

A P1 driver isn’t allowed to carry more than one “peer passenger” when driving.  A “peer passenger” is a person who is between 16 and 22 who is NOT the P1 driver’s:

For example, if you’re on your P1s you can drive your brother and your sister around no matter what their age is, as well as one other person between 16 or 22. You can’t however, drive three of your mates around unless two of them are over the age of 22.

You’re not allowed to tow anything, unless you’re doing it for work or you’re under instruction.


If your licence is cancelled or suspended as a result of a traffic offence, you’re only allowed to carry one passenger in total, whatever their age is, for the rest of your P1 period.


Rules and restrictions that apply to both P1 AND P2 drivers


You have to have your licence on you whenever you’re driving.


No mobile phone use (hands free or hand-held) or messaging of any kind is allowed. Also includes reading text messages.


You can’t have any alcohol or illicit drugs in your body.


Any suspension, drink driving offence without licence cancellation or suspension, or drug driving offence will result in an extension of your P1 or P2 period.


You will lose your licence if you get five demerit points in a year, or 12 over a three-year period.


You can’t drive high-powered vehicles

Exemptions only exist for driving during work hours at employer request or if a written exemption is granted by Vic Roads.


If you got your licence driving an automatic car, you aren’t allowed to drive a manual car until you get a full licence or pass another drive test in a manual car.


Once you’ve completed your probationary P2 successfully you will obtain your full license. Remember that you are still bound by the road rules and restrictions that apply to all Victorian drivers.


Safe driving and enjoy your FREEDOM!!!

By Bill