Appointments to apply for, renew driver’s licenses begin May 26 in Tennessee

Appointments for services can be made online. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Appointments for services can be made online. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Appointments for services can be made online. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

As the state works to reopen businesses across the state and drivers return to the roads, the Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland Security has issued new deadlines to renew and apply for new driver’s licenses.

While residents are still encouraged to use the state’s online portal, the state’s Driver’s Services Appointment system for in-person service relaunched May 16, and appointments will begin May 26, according to the department.

“We continue to encourage customers to utilize our e-Services portal to complete numerous transactions such as renewals, duplicates, paying reinstatement fees, and completing the new resident application,” TDSHS officials said via the department’s website. “We ask the public to be please be patient and understanding as normal services resume.”

According to the department, any drivers with licenses set to expire between March 12 and June 29 now have until Nov. 15 to renew. The department of safety will issue letters to those affected, which drivers should hold on to as proof of the extension.

New residents who moved to Tennessee any time between March 12 and May 31 now have until June 30 to obtain a Tennessee driver’s license.


For residents who need to take a road skills test to obtain a license, an appointment will need to be made, according to the department. Appointment availability begins June 15.

Additionally, while the federal deadline for REAL ID requirements have been extended until Oct. 1, 2021, Tennessee Driver Services Centers will resume issuing REAL IDs beginning July 6.

When visiting a service center, visitors are required to wear a face covering and stand at least 6 feet apart from others when possible. They will also be required to have their temperature checked and answer COVID-19 screening questions, according to the department.

Capacity limitations will also be in place, and some customers may be asked to wait in the vehicles and use an online queuing system if the building reaches capacity.

Find more about changes to driver's service here.
By Wendy Sturges
A Houston native and graduate of St. Edward's University in Austin, Wendy Sturges has worked as a community journalist covering local government, health care, business and development since 2011. She has worked with Community Impact since 2015 as a reporter and editor and moved to Tennessee in 2019.