Driving on Virginia Roads

DMV Information

Which models can I operate without a license?

If a moped is operated in excess of 35 mph or has a motor that displaces more than 50 CCs, it is considered a motorcycle. You would then be required to comply with all vehicle registration, insurance and inspection requirements, and driver licensing laws. Otherwise the vehicle is a moped (or scooter) and therefore does not require a license to operate. Keep reading for the requirements to legally drive your moped on Virginia streets.



The following provisions apply to mopeds operating on Virginia roadways. They do not apply to mopeds that are solely operated on private property. In Virginia, you must be at least age 16 to drive a moped. Virginia law requires every moped driver operating on Virginia roadways to carry a government-issued photo ID (does not have to be a driver’s license) and every driver and passenger must wear a helmet* while riding a moped. Drivers must also wear a face shield, safety glasses or goggles unless the moped has a windshield. Operation of mopeds is prohibited on the interstate.

If your driving privileges are suspended or revoked based on a DUI-related conviction, you must be in full compliance with all requirements imposed by DMV and the court before operating a moped. Customers with outstanding fines for HOT lane or toll violations cannot register any motor vehicle, including mopeds, until those fines have been paid. *Virginia State Police-approved helmet required for moped riders. Helmets should meet or exceed the standards and specifications of the Snell Memorial Foundation, the American National Standards Institute, Inc., or the U.S. Department of Transportation.


Virginia law requires mopeds operated on Virginia roadways to be titled and registered. * A title is $10. The annual registration fee is $20.25. DMV will issue one license plate per moped to be placed on the rear of the vehicle. When registering a moped, customers will fill out a Moped Certification (DMV form VSA 31) indicating how you intend to operate the vehicle. DMV will not require/collect the following for mopeds: Electric vehicle fee Insurance Odometer reading Safety inspection Sales and use tax (You will still have to pay retail sales tax if you purchase a moped in Virginia. Mopeds are exempt from personal property tax.)

If a moped is operated in excess of 35 mph or has a motor that displaces more than 50 CCs, it is considered a motorcycle. You are required to comply with all vehicle registration, insurance and inspection requirements, and driver licensing laws. * Your locality may require registration in addition to these requirements. Every moped rider, even if a temporary resident of Virginia, must meet the above requirements if you intend to operate your moped on Virginia roadways, even if not required in your home state.


To register mopeds, owners should bring to DMV the ownership document (title or manufacturers certificate of origin) that came with the vehicle purchase. Customers without an ownership document can bring in documentation such as a bill of sale with a completed Moped and All-Terrain Vehicle Affidavit in Lieu of Title Certificate (DMV form VSA 12M).

VSA 12M forms can be printed online at www.dmvNOW.com or are available at the information desk at any DMV or DMV Select office. Customers submitting form VSA 12M must visit a DMV customer service center to conduct the title transaction. The VSA 12M cannot be processed at a DMV Select office. Customers without documentation can call DMV at (804) 497-7100 for assistance.


Wear safety equipment: Moped drivers and passengers are encouraged to wear Virginia State Police-approved helmets and other proper clothing. Avoid sandals, shorts, and short sleeves. Consider wearing gloves and a riding jacket to increase your protection. Do not carry more people at one time than the number the moped is designed or equipped to carry. Be observant: Keep an eye on your surroundings. Make sure you have both side mirrors and angle them so you can see the most possible area behind you. It is against the law for any person to operate a moped while using earphones on or in both ears. Ride defensively: Don’t be aggressive; mopeds are smaller than most other vehicles sharing the road. Night riding is not recommended, but if necessary, wear bright colored clothing, reflective strips on your jacket and your helmet and keep your headlight in good working order. Take a training course: Many driver training schools in Virginia offer courses specific to mopeds. Visit www.dmvNOW.com/mopeds to find out about a driver training course near you.

Wear a helmet. Use eye-protection if no windshield. Carry a government-issued photo ID while riding (does not have to be a driver’s license). Do not operate over 35 mph.

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