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Drivers Can Renew Licenses By Appointment

December 14, 2012, 4:55 PM by Perry Groten

Drivers Can Renew Licenses By Appointment

People who need to get their driver licenses renewed can get around the long lines by calling ahead. 

The South Dakota Department of Public Safety now allows people to schedule an appointment for their renewals.  The reservations allow visitors to the Department of Motor Vehicles to move to the head of the line.

Renewing your driver license can take a matter of minutes on those rare occasions when you're lucky enough to catch a lull in the lines.  Otherwise, the wait becomes a major time commitment.

"I've been waiting just about two hours to get a license in the past," Nancy Dunwoody of Sioux Falls said.

"Especially at the DMV, it just takes forever if there's a line, there's tons of people," Wade Taylor of Sioux Falls said.

But you can leapfrog those lines by simply making an appointment over the phone or online at licensing stations in Sioux Falls, Rapid City, Aberdeen and Watertown.

Here's how it works: let's say you called ahead a couple of days for my appointment. You step into the DMV, check-in with the greeter; she checks the list of appointments. You give her the proper documentation and then you have a seat.

At the next available opening, those with an appointment get priority over those who don't.

"I think it's a great deal if you can make an appointment and get in here when you want to, it's a great deal, I think," Taylor said.

But those who are more spur-of-the-moment think making an appointment to renew their license is just one more commitment in a busy schedule that they may not be able to keep.

"I was leaving work to come here, I didn't know if I would get caught doing something I wouldn't be able to make my appointment time and I wasn't sure what would happen if you didn't make your appointment time," Dunwoody said.

You'll have to reschedule if you're more than five minutes late for your appointment.  Promptness can trump patience for those who can't wait for their license.

People who do make an appointment are asked to arrive 15 minutes ahead of schedule.  You can also make appointments for a drive test at certain exam stations in South Dakota.

To make an appointment, click here.

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