You can't drive alone anywhere if you have just a Florida learner's permit. That includes driving yourself to school or work. You can only drive with a licensed driver who is at least 21 years old and occupies the front passenger seat at all times.

Florida learners' permit rules

The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (HSMV) states that 15-year-olds can obtain a learner's license. With a learner's license, you may:

  • Only drive during daylight hours during the first three months and with a licensed driver who is at least 21 years old in the passenger seat. After that period, you can drive until 10 p.m., but again must drive with a licensed driver who is at least 21 years old and occupies the front passenger seat until you get your driver's license. 

Driving age in Florida

To earn a Florida operator's license (16- and 17-year-old), you must be at least 16 years old and have held a learner's license for at least one year without any traffic convictions.

The Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles specifically notes that every person under 18 years old must hold a Learner's License for one year. There are no exceptions to this law. Also, no person may drive alone with a Learner's License, regardless of age. So a teen or those with a Florida learner's permit can't drive alone.

Once teens obtain an Intermediate License, you may drive without a licensed adult during the driving hour restrictions if traveling to or from work. 

Driving privileges are based on age. Florida has drivers license restrictions for 16-year-olds and 17-year-olds.

Florida drivers' license restrictions for 16-year-olds

Driving is allowed between 6 a.m. and 11 p.m. without a licensed adult (all other times must be accompanied by a licensed driver at least 21 years old occupying the closest seat to the right of the driver or be traveling to or from work).

Florida drivers' license restrictions for 17-year-olds

Driving allowed between 5 a.m. and 1 a.m. without a licensed adult (all other times must be accompanied by a licensed driver at least 21 years old occupying the closest seat to the right of the driver or be traveling to or from work).

The good news for Florida teen drivers is that they are allowed to drive at all hours once they reach 18.

If you receive a ticket while in the learner's permit stage of the Florida graduated driver's licensing (GDL) process, you won't be able to take the driving test for an Intermediate License for one year from the conviction date.

To learn all about the best ways to insure a teen driver, see our page on car insurance for young drivers and car insurance when you have a learner's permit.