Getting your ‘M Class’ drivers license is an exciting process. The moment you look down at your newly minted license and see that ‘M’ added behind the ‘D’ can be a real moment for some people. I asked to see if they could reverse the letters to have it read ‘MD’ (how col would THAT be?!)- denied. Still, it’s pretty exciting to finally be seen as a licensed motorcycle rider in the eyes of the law.
Here’s how you do it:
- First, you must have a valid drivers license.
- Get your permit. It’s probably a good idea to familiarize yourself with the Rules of the Road initially. Studying the Illinois Motorcycle Operator Manual will get you prepared to take the motorcycle permit test. It’s a 15 question, multiple choice test that costs $10. You can practice for it HERE. Find a Department of Motor Vehicles facility location near you and take the test. Once you pass, hold on to the permit and receipt, because you will need them for the licensing exam.
- Get your learn on. Once a permit is obtained, you can attend a riding school to get your learn on. Two popular riding schools in Chicago are Ride Chicago and Motorcycle Riding’sCool. There is also a Motorcycle Safety Training Program offered though Harper College that is free (with a $20 refundable deposit to hold your space). Learning how to ride in an actual riding school makes a difference because the classes are designed to have you ready to pass your state licensing test. Once you learn how to ride and sharpen your mad skillz, you are ready to…
- Rock the State Licensing Tests. (dun dun dun!) There are two; a written test and a driving test. Pay attention in your riding school and study your permit study manual and you should be ok for the written test. The driving test is the final hurdle. This can be done a couple of ways. One way is to take it with the riding school you attended (if they offer this service). If you do it this way, the riding school may provide the motorcycle and you will, most likely, be taking the test on familiar ground with a state licensing representative. Another way you can take the test is to have a friend loan you their bike (have them drive it to the DMV, or risk getting a ticket!) and take the state test on their course. When you pass, you relinquish your current license, wait for the ‘M’ to be added to a new one, and *wha la!* you are officially a card carrying motorcycle rider! Congratulations. You deserve it!