How To Renew Your Expired Driver’s License in Virginia

By on May 22, 2013 in Blog Posts | 0 comments

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Over a year ago my driver’s license expired and I was too lazy to get it renewed. Because I’m a hermit I rarely use the thing, I didn’t put renewing it high on my to-do list. Then I got pulled over by the coppers because I didn’t have a front license plate (someone hit my car and it broke off, then I was too lazy to fix it) and they ticketed me for that and my expired license and took it away.

Then my little journey began. Now that I didn’t have a license, I could no longer (legally) drive. My lovely girlfriend was kind enough to ferry me around for the next two weeks until I was able to get my license. Before going to the DMV we did some research and found out what I needed in order to renew my license. Come to find out that because my license had been expired for over a year I would need to start from scratch, including taking the road signs, knowledge and driving tests. I hated my life. After some digging, I finally found an old marriage certificate from a marriage that no longer exists and my expired passport. I was finally on my way to my new license!

If the DMV asks you, this is a stop sign.
(I got this one right, for the record.)

When I went to the DMV I knew I’d probably also need to prove residency, so I had my utility bill saved as a PDF file on my phone. That wasn’t good enough for the fine folks behind the counter, who told me they don’t accept electronic bills. I left and had it printed, then returned. After another happy 45 minutes of waiting I was allowed to take the tests. I failed the road signs test with a single wrong answer. I hadn’t bothered to study much because I figured that as a 31 year old man who has been driving for more than half of his life I should be able to pass the test I passed when I was 16. That’s when the tricky bastards put a sign on the test that wasn’t in the manual and I got it wrong. Just for the record, the shape of the road sign is what they are wanting you to know, not what’s actually printed on the sign.

Determined not to fail again, I read the whole damned manual and took a dozen practice tests. The next weekend when I returned, I got 100% on the road signs, knowledge and driving tests. People like to hate on the DMV, but I found them to be pleasant and relatively efficient. Props to the fine folks at the Virginia Beach Buckner location. I was in and out, temporary license in hand, in two hours. That’s pretty impressive.

So, dear reader: Do your research. Don’t be lazy. Don’t be me.