Hawaii Permit Practice Tests – 30 Questions to Help You Pass

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#1. When holding an instruction permit, a driver:

You may operate a motor vehicle upon any highway with an instruction permit only when accompanied by a licensed driver at least 21 years of age. If between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m., you must be accompanied by a licensed driver who is your parent or guardian (unless you are an emancipated minor).

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#2. When you are involved in an accident where the accident scene is not readily visible to on-coming traffic, you should:

Warn passing traffic. Have someone warn approaching cars to prevent further damage from oncoming traffic. Keep a flashlight and flares in your vehicle for emergency use.

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#3. A driver may be charged with driving under the influence of alcohol:

A police officer who believes a driver is under the influence of alcohol, may request the driver to take a test. Refusal to take the test may result in the revocation of your license for one year, two years or four years depending upon the driver’s prior alcohol enforcement contacts. In addition, the driver may be charged with driving under the influence of alcohol even though he refuses the test.

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#4. Tire blowouts are most often the result of:

Tire blowouts are most often the result of improper tire care and maintenance.

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#5. Assuming you are traveling 70 mph and suddenly need to stop under favorable conditions. How far will your car approximately go before you react and start braking (thinking time)?

A car travels 77 feet, based on a thinking or reaction time of 3/4 second, which is typical for most motorists under most traffic conditions.

With a reaction time of 3/4 second, you will travel 11 feet for each 10 mph of speed before hitting the brake.

3/4 second is the thinking time used in the illustration in the manual.

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#6. On which side should you pass a vertical panel like this?

The diagonal stripes on the barricade or vertical panel guide the driver towards the direction to which traffic is to pass. Stripes sloping downward to the right mean the driver should bear to the right. Conversely, stripes sloping downward to the left mean bear to the left.

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#7. A traffic light with a green arrow means:

A green arrow has the same meaning as a green light for the indicated lane of traffic. You must yield to all pedestrians and vehicles already in the intersection. When entering the intersection, you must turn or proceed in the direction indicated by the arrow.

The green turn arrow indicates a protected turn/movement. Oncoming traffic is stopped by a red light.

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#8. When a police officer directs you to drive on the wrong side of the road, you should:

You must obey all lawful orders and directions of a police officer. You must also obey signal of any school crossing guard, flagman, or flag person.

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#9. You drive defensively when you:

Defensive driving is a driving technique in which you identify dangerous driving situations and take action to defend against the danger before an accident situation develops. As a defensive driver, you should:

  • Stay alert, keep your eyes moving in order to be aware of developing traffic situations around you at all times.
  • Look well ahead of your vehicle and anticipate the possibility of a chain reaction traffic situation.
  • Have an alternate plan of action ready in case an unexpected event develops. (Always leave yourself a way out.)
  • Always maintain the proper following distance.
  • Always maintain the proper speed for all highway conditions.
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#10. Your lane ends ahead and there is a large truck in the lane beside you. What is the best thing to do?

Slow down and merge behind the truck.

Large vehicles require greater stopping distances than other vehicles. When changing lanes or at intersections other drivers and highway users must make allowances for the increased stopping distance required by the large vehicles.

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#11. When are you allowed to cross the center divider of a freeway?

If for any reason you must proceed in the opposite direction, go to the next exit, leave the freeway and re-enter in the opposite direction.

Never cross the center divider of a freeway.

Never turn around on a freeway.

Never back up on a freeway.

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#12. You approach this intersection. Which lane can you use for a right turn?

Directional markings are white arrows or words painted in the traffic lane to indicate the direction in which you must go. You must move only in the direction indicated by the arrow. Where arrows indicate more than one direction, you may choose any direction indicated.

Always use traffic lanes as they are defined by pavement markings and road signs.

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#13. When towing a trailer large enough to obstruct your inside rearview mirror, you are required to have:

If your trailer is large enough to obstruct your view through your inside rear-view mirror, you must have outside rear-view mirrors of proper size on both sides of your car.

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#14. Safety belts are life belts. They:

Protect yourself, your passengers, and others by using safety belts at all times while driving. All passengers (not only front seat passengers) are required by law (291-11.6, HRS) to use seat belts.

Children under age 4 must be in a child restraint. If the child is four years of age or older but less than eight years of age, the child must be properly restrained in a child safety seat or booster seat.

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#15. If you see this sign in front of you, it you should know that:

The do not enter sign tells you that the road or street ahead is for one-way traffic traveling in the opposite direction. You must not drive into it in the direction you are going.

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#16. When parking on any hill or sloping street, facing uphill or downhill, it is important to:

Drivers are responsible for making sure that their vehicle is not a hazard when it is parked. When you leave your vehicle unattended, you must:

  • Stop the engine
  • Lock the ignition and remove the ignition key
  • Set the parking brake

When the vehicle is on a grade, turn the wheels toward the curb (or when facing uphill and there is a curb, away from the curb).

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#17. Before turning, signal continuously for at least:

When slowing down, stopping, turning, or changing lanes, you must signal to let others know what you plan to do. You must signal every time, even when there are no other vehicles in sight.

Signals must be given for at least 100 feet before you change lanes, turn, or stop. It is advisable to signal for a greater distance when driving at higher speeds.

Signals shall be given either by means of the hand and arm or by signal lamps.

Hand signals must be used when the vehicle turn signals are not operating.

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#18. If you were skidding as shown here, what should you do?

It is important to remember that when you encounter a skid or control problem, you should stop or reduce whatever it was that you were doing when the problem started.

  • Ease off the accelerator. The skid may stop as soon as you do this.
  • For cars without anti-lock brakes, avoid using the brakes.
  • Turn the steering wheel in the direction of the skid.
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#19. The road edge on the right side is marked by a:

Edge lines are solid white or yellow lines along the edge of the roadway to be used as a safety guide. White lines are used along the right edge of the roadway and yellow edge lines may be along the left edge of the roadway on divided streets and highways.

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#20. As you approach a roundabout, you should:

Slow down as you approach the roundabout. Each road approaching the roundabout is marked with a yield sign and may also have yield line markings on the pavement. A roundabout allows you to continue through without stopping at a STOP sign or a traffic signal.

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#21. Certain highway signs and markings advise you of hazardous conditions. Such devices are known as:

Warning devices advise you of hazardous conditions or the possibility of hazardous conditions. For your own safety, obey warning devices. Disregarding the information given by a warning device may result in an accident due to your negligence.

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#22. When preparing for a turn at an intersection, you should:

Get into the proper lane for a turn well in advance. Slow to a proper speed before you enter a curve or begin a turn. Do not drive in a bike lane.

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#23. You approach a stopped school bus with flashing red lights on this roadway. You must:

Whenever a school bus is stopped with alternating red signal lamps flashing, the driver of any motor vehicle on the same highway shall stop before reaching the school bus and shall not proceed until the school bus resumes motion or the flashing red signal lamps are turned off.

Vehicles proceeding in the opposite direction on a divided highway are not required to stop. A divided highway is two roadways separated by a strip of land or other space not intended for vehicular travel.

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#24. You want to turn right ahead. There is a bicyclist just in front of you. What should you do?

A significant number of crashes occur when a motorist passes a bicyclist, and immediately slows down and turns right, without leaving enough space for the bicyclist. If you plan to make an immediate right turn, it is better not to pass the bicyclist.

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#25. Registered motor vehicles in Hawaii must, in general, pass a safety inspection:

All motor vehicles operated on the public highways must have an official Periodic Motor Vehicle Inspection (PMVI), at least once a year. New vehicles do not need to be inspected until two years after their initial inspection on the date that they are first sold.

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#26. You see an inattentive driver ahead of you. What should you do?

Defensive driving is a driving technique in which you identify dangerous driving situations and take action to defend against the danger before an accident situation develops. Your defensive action will be applied in avoiding vehicles driven by aggressive, offensive, discourteous, careless, inattentive, impulsive, ignorant, and intoxicated persons as well as pedestrians who have some of the same characteristics.

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#27. Three vehicles approach an uncontrolled intersection. Car A is on the right of Car C. Car B is on the left of Car C. In which order should they proceed through the intersection?

Car A goes first, followed by car C.

Car C must yield to car A.

Car B must yield to both car A and car C.

At intersections not controlled by traffic signals or signs, yield to any vehicle that reaches an intersection before you. Yield to the car on the right when vehicles approach at the same time.

When turning left, yield to all oncoming traffic that is so close as to be a hazard.

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#28. When it starts to rain, you should:

Rain causes two basic driving problems – it reduces the driver’s visibility and changes the condition of the road surface. The first few drops of rain are a danger signal to a defensive driver. You should reduce speed, use extra caution, and allow at least twice the normal following distance. Turn on your windshield wipers. When heavy rain reduces your visibility, turn on your head lamps (low beam) so that others may see you. In many states headlamps are required whenever windshield wipers are operating due to weather conditions.

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#29. This yellow sign means:

Divided highway ahead (divided highway begins).

You are getting close to the place where two-way traffic will be divided by a center strip. Each roadway is one-way. Stay to the right.

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#30. Which is true about alcohol?

Alcohol is a depressant, not a stimulant. It slows normal reflexes, interferes with judgment, reduces alertness and impairs vision.

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The Hawaii Knowledge Test for a Permit and Driver License

Quick facts about the Hawaii driver license and permit test:

  Number of Questions: 30
  Correct answers needed: 24
  Passing score: 80 percent
  Time limit: None
  Earliest retest upon failure: 1 week

Prepare for Your Hawaii Permit Examination

To earn your first driving privileges or transfer a foreign driver license to a Hawaii license, you must pass a 30-question multiple-choice written examination.

The test will check your knowledge of rod signs, traffic signals, pavement markings, common traffic rules, and safe driving.

Everything you need to learn is in the official Hawaii Driver’s Manual. Questions on the knowledge test are drawn from this manual and you will always find the answers in this booklet. So, make sure you get yourself a copy and start studying.

The Purpose of the Hawaii Permit Practice Tests

The purpose of the practice test is to help you learn and verify your knowledge.

Practice tests and cheat sheets should not be used instead of studying the manual. While memorizing questions and answers may seem like a quick way of getting ready for and passing the knowledge test, it will not help you become a responsible and safe driver.

One of the first steps towards being a responsible and safe driver is to have a good understanding about traffic laws and the number of risks involved in driving a vehicle.

Safe driving is also about attitude and the will to learn. All drivers occasionally make mistakes or misunderstand the rules of the road but the more you know the less mistakes you will make.

How the Permit Practice Tests Work

All practice tests are random.

Each time you start a test, 30 questions are randomly drawn from a large pool of questions. This makes every new test unique. You will get a new mix of questions and answers each time you take the test.

By the time the test runs out of questions, you are probably ready for the real examination.

Remember to aim for a full score on your Hawaii permit practice. It may seem impossible when you first start but by reading everything carefully, you will get there.

There is instant feedback after each question. If your answer is wrong, there is also a brief explanation. at the end of the test, you will see your score. There is also a button to start the test again.



How to Ace the Test

The most common mistake on the examination is to try to get it over with as quickly as possible.

Remember to try to stay calm and read the question and the answer choices all the way through. Don’t just pick the first answer that looks right. Check everything to make sure your answer makes sense.

When a question has four answer choices it can be easy to spot a “nonsense” answer. The greater the number of “nonsense” choices you can eliminate, the easier it is to work your way to the right answer.

Can you spot any nonsense in this one?


Question: Information you need to drive safely is gained primarily by:

  • A. Following other traffic
  • B. Seeing
  • C. Talking to yourself
  • D. Turning on the radio

There is no time limit on the knowledge examination. You can take the time you need. Most test takers finish in about 15 minutes (and they still had enough time to read carefully).

  Other important tips: Reminders for the DMV test

What if You Fail the Test?

In most cases, you can retake the test after waiting one week. Use this time wisely.

Use 15 minutes each day to read a chapter in the manual. Discuss what you have read with a friend, family member, or anyone who has a license or is an experienced driver. By putting your own words to common traffic rules, the information will stick better.

Use another 15 minutes to take a handful of practice tests. Pace yourself before answering so you don’t make any unnecessary mistakes (use the same strategy when you take the real test).

Try not to cram the day before the test. It is better to split your studies over many days.

Understand the Graduated Licensing Program

Every teenager under 18 years must follow the Hawaii graduated licensing program .

It is a step-by-step program that helps new drivers under 18 years gradually gain driving experience under adult supervision and with restrictions aimed to reduce high-risk driving situations during the learning phase.

The Hawaii graduated licensing program has three steps:

    Step one: Learner’s (Instruction) Permit
    Step two: Provisional License
    Step three: Full Driver License

Each step has its own requirements and restrictions.

You must be familiar with the restrictions and any possible sanctions if you violate any of them.



Things to Remember about the Learner’s Permit

    You cannot drive alone. You must always drive together with a licensed person who is at least 21 years.

    You cannot drive between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. unless you drive together with a licensed parent or legal guardian.

    All occupants must wear seat belts or be restraint in a child safety seat.

    The permit must always be in your possession when you practice driving.

Things to Remember about the Provisional License

    You cannot drive with more than one passenger under 18 years.

This does not apply if passengers are household members or if you are being accompanied by a licensed parent or guardian.

    You cannot drive between 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m.

This does not apply if to or from a place of employment, a school-authorized activity, or if you drive together with a licensed a parent or legal guardian.

    All occupants must wear seat belts or be restraint in a child safety seat.

    The provisional license must always be in your possession when you drive.


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