Do you need a license to drive a golf cart?

Most states require drivers to have a driver’s license when operating a golf cart on public roads. However, some allow persons without a license to drive a golf cart if accompanied by a licensed adult or driving on private property. Requirements for driving a golf cart will vary by location.

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How old do you have to be to drive a golf cart?

The minimum legal age to drive a golf cart varies by state and can fall anywhere between 12 and 18 years. Many states set 16 as the age to start driving a golf cart. Young drivers without a license often need to be accompanied by an adult. And if someone underage and unlicensed gets into an accident, the parents or guardians may be liable to pay for damages.

What are the requirements to drive a golf cart?

Each state has its own set of rules for driving golf carts, so be sure to check the law governing golf carts in your state before you head out on the road. Some areas will prohibit golf carts on streets and roadways, and some states may have laws requiring headlights, brake lights, and other safety features. There may also be unique speed limit laws about golf carts from state to state.

Here are a few basic golf cart guidelines that hold true across the entire country:

Golf carts can only operate during daylight hours

If your state allows golf carts on public roads, limit your driving time to the hours between sunrise and sunset.

Golf carts need to be street legal

You can't drive a standard golf cart on public roads in most states. You'll have to make a few upgrades to take your golf cart off private property. Street-legal golf carts need to have headlights and taillights, brake lights, reflectors, mirrors, turn signals, a windshield, a horn, and seatbelts.

Don't drink and drive a golf cart

Like any other vehicle, you must be below the legal limit of alcohol while operating a golf cart. Otherwise, you could receive a DUI (while also putting the safety of yourself and others at risk).

You may need to register your golf cart

If you plan to take your golf cart onto public roads, you may need to register it with the state and get a set of license plates. You don't need to register your vehicle if your golf cart isn't leaving your private property. However, double-check with your state's DMV – just to be sure.

Learn more about vehicle registration.

Insurance requirements for a golf cart

Like golf cart driving laws, golf cart insurance requirements will also vary by state. Even if golf cart insurance isn't mandatory where you live, a golf cart insurance policy may be beneficial if you're involved in an accident or if something happens to your vehicle. Liability coverage can cover you if you're liable for someone's injuries or damages while riding your golf cart.

You can add comprehensive and collision coverages, which protect against physical damage to your golf cart, along with medical payments coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, and accessory coverage to your policy for an additional cost. See more about what golf cart insurance covers and how much it costs.

Cruise around in style with golf cart insurance from Progressive

Learn more about our golf cart insurance offering.