Mopeds are a comfortable and practical way to wind through cramped public streets. Though the engines are less powerful than those of motorcycles and cars, these vehicles help cut down on running costs and the hassle associated with ownership paperwork.
Even so, there are some basic needs for you to ride a moped in the US legally. So do mopeds need a license? Scroll down to learn!
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Do You Need A Motorcycle License For A Moped?
It depends on which state you are living in. In general, only 2 states (Virginia, North Caroline) allow you to drive mopeds without any license. In contrast, 48 out of 50 states have strict licensing requirements for moped operators.
States Allow Driving A Moped Without A License
Only two states, including North Caroline and Virginia, allow driving a moped without a license. However, the moped operator must be at least 16 years old and comply with general traffic laws. You must also follow the traffic laws for mopeds to avoid trouble.
States Where A Motorcycle License Is Necessary
Most US residents must apply for a special license to drive a moped, as 48 states have this requirement. However, the type and class of license varies from place to place. Here is a quick breakdown of moped laws in some states:
|Alabama||B restriction license|
|Alaska||Class M1 motorcycle license|
|Arizona||Standard driver’s license|
|Arkansas||Class M or Class MD license|
|California||M1 or M2 motorcycle license|
|Colorado||Valid driver’s license|
|Connecticut||Standard driver’s license|
|Delaware||Standard driver’s license|
|Florida||Motorcycle license or class E driver’s license|
|Georgia||Driver’s license, instructional permit, or limited permit.|
|Hawaii||Valid motorcycle license|
|Idaho||Valid driver’s license|
|Illinois||Class L or Class M license|
|Indiana||Class B MDC endorsement or valid driver’s license or|
|Iowa||Valid driver’s license or a moped permit|
|Kansas||Valid driver’s license or a moped permit|
|Kentucky||Standard driver’s license or moped license|
|Louisiana||Valid driver’s license or learner’s permit (for operator under 16)|
|Maine||Standard driver’s license or moped license|
|Maryland||Standard driver’s license or moped operator’s permit|
|Massachusetts||Valid driver’s license|
|Michigan||Standard driver or moped license|
|Minnesota||Valid driver’s license or a moped permit|
|Missouri||Valid driver’s license|
|Montana||Driver’s license (any class)|
|Nebraska||Motorcycle license or endorsement when you remove the pedals from your moped|
|Nevada||Driver’s license (any class)|
|New Hampshire||Valid driver’s or moped license|
|New Jersey||Valid driver’s license|
|New Mexico||New Mexico driver’s license or a moped permit|
|New York||Valid driver license|
|North Dakota||Valid driver’s license or a moped permit (for operators under 14)|
|Ohio||Standard driver’s license or moped license|
|Oklahoma||Driver’s license or a motorized bicycle license|
|Oregon||Standard driver’s license or moped license|
|Pennsylvania||Class C driver’s license|
|Rhode Island||Standard driver’s license|
|South Carolina||Driver’s license or a special moped license|
|South Dakota||Driver’s license (any class)|
|Tennessee||Driver’s license (any class)|
|Texas||Standard driver’s license|
|Utah||Standard driver’s license|
|Vermont||Driver’s license (any class)|
|Virginia||Valid government-issued photo ID|
|Washington||Driver’s license (any class)|
|West Virginia||Driver’s license (any class)|
|Wisconsin||Class D valid driver license or a Special Restricted License for mopeds designed to travel less than 35 mph|
|Wyoming||Driver’s license (any class)|
Do I Need Insurance To Ride A Moped?
Again, it depends on where you live. Some states in the United States implemented insurance requirements for mopeds, such as Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, California, Florida, Louisiana, etc.
The insurance cost of your vehicle varies according to the conditions outlined in state law. For example, some states reduce costs when you attend their training classes. Plus, the driver’s age and the time since the steering wheel or the moped model also affect the price.
Do I Need A Certificate Of Title To Ride A Moped?
The answer is yes if you are a resident of one of the 35 states that commit to this legal issue. Some governments that enforce vehicle registration include Virginia, Wisconsin, Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, North Dakota, etc.
Some states, like South Carolina, also include a valid license plate in their moped rules. Still, the actual implementation depends on each model’s engine capacity and top speed. Usually, you need to pay about $30 for a lifetime subscription.
Some Traffic Laws For Riding A Moped
Driving a moped is not done with just paperwork. Instead, you have to learn about the traffic laws for your vehicle that vary from department to department.
For example, the legal age to operate a moped is between 14 and 16 years old depending on local regulations. There is also no uniform regulation of protective gear regarding mopeds across the United States.
Case in point, Texas, Tennessee, and some areas require a DOT-approved safety helmet at all times regardless of rider age. Meanwhile, Rhode Island or South Carolina only applies this condition to drivers under 21 (a few places even lower this level to 18).
In contrast, some governments, such as Iowa, Illinois, or Wisconsin, are extremely lenient with these safety standards.
In general, traveling between lanes and entering highways is completely prohibited. Riders should stay close to the right-hand lanes on public roads except when turning left. Headlights, turn signals, tail lights, and horns are needed before you are on the wheel.
Do I Need A License To Drive A Scooter?
It varies according to your state laws. In general, scooter drivers need an endorsement if their vehicle features an engine displacement of over 50 cubic centimeters or produces a maximum speed of 25 miles per hour or more.
Is Driving A Scooter The Same As A Moped?
Though both are two-wheeled vehicles, they have different engine sizes. While the average moped is limited to 50cc, scooters may increase to 250cc.
See more: Motorcycle vs. Moped Vs. Scooter
It is best to consult the Department of Transportation or a trusted attorney at your local for detailed regulations about a moped license. Don’t hit the road without understanding the moped operation. Otherwise, you could end up with expensive fines or lawsuits.