What is a learner's permit?
According to article 122 of the Highway Code, the pink sheet is the document that every (almost) driver gets once he/she has passed the theoretical driving licence test. With the pink sheet you can practice driving your car or motorbike always accompanied by an experienced driver.
It is called the pink sheet because it is a pink paper and is written with green ink.
In a way, the pink sheet is a license with many limitations. Ironically, unlike the B license, however, there are no limits to the cars you can drive. With the pink sheet you can drive all cars regardless of their weight/power ratio so all aspiring drivers can practice. The weight/power limit is in fact one of the limitations for novice drivers that does not apply to a pink sheet holder.
How long does the pink sheet last?
The pink sheet lasts a maximum of 6 months. During this period, the driver must learn to drive practically in order to be able to participate and pass the practical theory test.
During these 6 months the driver can take the practical driving test twice. Until a few years ago, when both attempts failed, the pink slip was cancelled and the theory test had to be retaken. For some years now there has been the theory test report or pink slip report which avoids having to retake the theory test (we'll talk about it later in the article).
By being able to take the practical test already a month after getting the pink sheet, many people don't even reach the expiration date of the document. When the license is issued, the pink slip is cancelled and torn.
Where can I drive with a learner's permit?
With a learner's permit, you must always practice using vehicles in which a passenger can also take a seat as an experienced driver or instructor. Driving with a learner's permit is permitted in unpredictable places and on back roads so as not to create danger or obstruct traffic.
Our advice is to practice at quiet hours avoiding the typical hours around 9 am and 6 pm which are typically super busy. If you get in the way of traffic or drive on crowded streets, you could incur an administrative penalty of between €84 and €355.
What are the pink sheet restrictions?
As introduced above, the pink sheet allows you to drive, but it also imposes several restrictions. Let's see what are the main limitations of the pink sheet:
- Maximum speed on major extra-urban roads of 90 km / h.
- Maximum speedon the highway 100 km / h
- Driving only in the presence of an accompanying person with legitimate requirements (explained below)
- Display of the P-mark on the front windshield and on the rear window of the car. The P marking is sometimes replaced by the GA marking as we will see below.
- Passenger carriage restrictions (explained below)
How do you get a pink paper B license?
When we talk about a learner's permit, the vast majority of us think of the learner's permit that you get before you take the B license practical exam. Basically, you can get a pink slip B driver's license after the age of 18. This is in fact the minimum age to take the theory test.
Once you have passed the theory test, you will be issued with a pink sheet B licence which authorises you to drive with a driver who complies with the legal requirements. As for restrictions, the driver must respect the same speed limits as the newly licensed drivers. We are therefore talking about a maximum of 100 km/h on motorways and a maximum of 90 km/h on main extra-urban roads.
As much as it may seem pointless to remember, you should always drive with the P sign in front of and behind the vehicle. In addition to failing to report the presence of a beginner, non-compliance can be punished with an administrative penalty.
In the next paragraph we will see what is the only exception to the age rule, that is, how to get the pink slip at 17.
Can you get a learner's permit at age 17?
Thanks to article115 of the Highway Code, from 2012 it is possible to get a B driving licence at 17 years of age. This is thanks to the introduction of accompanied driving (AD).
With accompanied driving, holders of the A1 licence (the famous 125 licence) who have reached the age of 17 can practise driving a car with a view to the practical test for the B licence.
However, there are conditions that must be met in order to obtain a B licence at the age of 17:
- The vehicle used for practice must not exceed 3.5 tonnes in weight, must have a kW/t ratio of less than 55 and a maximum power of less than 70 kW. In practice, only vehicles for novice drivers may be used.
- You must have taken a driving course of at least 10 hours at a driving school. Of these 10 hours, at least 4 hours must have been spent on a motorway or suburban road and at least 2 hours in night visibility conditions.
Unlike the normal pink slip, using a pink B licence slip at age 17, you must display the GA mark, which refers to accompanied driving, instead of the P mark.
How do I get the pink AM sheet?
In the case of the pink sheet of the AM license, that is, the one for mopeds with 2, 3 or 4 wheels, the situation becomes more complicated. The limitations, in fact, vary according to the type of vehicle used for driving.
For each type of vehicle, there is an obligation to use only roads with little traffic to avoid putting yourself in danger or creating traffic jams.
Vehicles with an approved passenger seat next to the driver make the presence of a passenger compulsory. Vehicles that do not have this feature can be driven alone. In this case, the typical Piaggio mopeds and the Piaggio monkey can be driven alone. Microcars or minicars, on the other hand, must only be driven in the presence of an accompanying person who meets the legal requirements.
Mopeds with 3 or 4 wheels make it compulsory to displaythe P mark in order to be identified as a learner.
How do I get my pink A and A1 licence slip?
The pink sheet for the A or A1 license has certain similarities with the pink sheet for the AM license. In this regard, it is mandatory to ride with a passenger if there is an approved passenger seat next to the driver.
There is no limit on the horsepower of the motorcycle to be used for the pink sheet A license. In contrast, for the A1 pink sheet licence, vehicles with a maximum power output not exceeding 11kW and a maximum displacement of 125cc can be used.
How does motorway driving with a pink sheet work?
Let's start by debunking an urban legend: with the pink sheet you can drive safely both on the motorway and on the main road in the suburbs.
The main limitation to bear in mind is that with the pink sheet on the motorway you have to respect the 100 km/h limit and keep to the two lanes closest to the right-hand side of the carriageway. This means that on a 3-lane road you will not be able to use the leftmost lane, also called the overtaking lane.
Who can be a chaperone with a learner's permit?
As has been said several times, the pink sheet allows driving only in the presence of a chaperone who meets the legal requirements. But what are the legal requirements for a driver chaperone with a learner's permit? Let's look at them now:
- Under 65 years of age
- Driver's license obtained for at least 10 years
- Possession of the psycho-physical requirements to drive
Pink sheet and theory test report
Some time ago, if the candidate failed the practical test twice, in addition to canceling the pink slip, it was necessary to re-study and repeat the theory test. However, thanks to a circular in March 2016, this is no longer necessary as the theory exam, also known as the pink slip or second pink slip, has been introduced.
The pink slip report is available for those who fail the practice test twice within 6 months of the pink slip duration or for those who do not have time to retake the test a second time within 6 months. The pink sheet extension must be applied for within two months of the expiration of the first pink sheet at the same premises of the Motor Vehicle Registration Office where the theory test was taken.
The cost of the transfer of the pink sheet is two bulletins of 16 and 26.40 euros. The receipts are to be paid respectively to postal current accounts 4028 and 9001.
Is it possible to carry passengers with the pink sheet?
You can carry passengers in a pink sheet as long as there is an accompanying person on board who meets the legal requirements. When carrying other passengers, you must always comply with the limits of the pink sheet.
However, you must remember that you can carry passengers in your pink sheet, but not under the following conditions:
- Driving on major extra-urban roads.
- Driving on the motorway
- Driving in the evening/night hours, i.e. from half an hour after sunset to half an hour before sunrise.
Are there any travel restrictions with the pink sheet?
With the pink leaf, there are cylinder capacity limitations depending on the type of pink leaf. Pink Leaf B and A have no limitations. On the other hand, the A1 and AM pink sheet licenses, as well as the B pink sheet licenses before the age of 18, have displacement limitations.
We advise you to take a look at the paragraphs dedicated to each of the licenses for exact details.
What happens when the pink slip expires?
When the pink sheet expires, the driver who has failed the practical test can apply for a so-called test extension from 2016. With this bureaucratic procedure, a new 6-month pink sheet is obtained which allows 2 more attempts for the practical test.
In most cases, four attempts are enough to learn the basics of driving and to pass the driving test easily without having to retake the theory test.
How do I get an extension of my learner's permit?
There is no procedurefor obtaining an extension of your learner's permit.
The only option for those who need to obtain a new learner's permit is to practice taking the test we discussed earlier in the article.