Golf Carts: Are They Street Legal?

By Ben Jarratt •  Updated: 07/14/23 •  6 min read

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Are golf carts street legal? This is a question that many people are asking themselves. For some, the answer to this question might seem like it should be obvious. However, there are many factors to consider when coming up with a solution. In this blog post, we will discuss golf cart laws and hopefully offer you some clarity on whether or not your new purchase is street legal!

are golf carts street legal - golf carts parked

State laws vary, so it is important to check your state’s requirements before you buy. For example, certain states require registration and insurance for use on public roads, while others do not allow them.

Golf carts are typically designed with low-speed motors that are meant only for driving around the golf course or in private neighborhoods because they have enough power to get up inclines but not fast enough to be considered street legal due to restrictions like a 30 mph top speed limit (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration). However, there are some exceptions out there, such as electric cars manufactured specifically for local streets, bypassing these limitations with their higher speeds. Bottom line: if you plan on using your golf cart primarily outside of the street, it’s legal. If you plan on using your golf cart mostly inside the street, it’s illegal and you’ll have to find another way to transport your golf club selection!

Most states require registration and insurance for the use of public roads, which can cost between $30-$60 per year depending on what state you live in. States without such requirements typically allow them to be operated only where they are not a hazard to pedestrians or other vehicles due to their low speeds. 

For most people, however, these restrictions do not apply because there is enough space around the streets that are privately owned and outside areas like parks. Bottom line: if you want to drive your golf cart legally, then find out about laws associated with going in public versus private before deciding how often you will use it.

The size of a golf cart is no different from any other vehicle, and they are typically limited to 25 miles per hour or less to exceed the maximum speed limit for cars on public roads. However, this does not mean that you should automatically assume your neighborhood’s streets are safe just because there are only residential buildings around; be sure to check with local authorities before driving on these types of roads as well

 Well, apart from registering and insuring them according to state laws, most people prefer having their vehicle registered through the DOT (Department of Transportation), which can usually be done at a DMV office near you. This has helped many people avoid the hazards of driving on a public street without the proper registration and insurance.

are golf carts street legal - lined up carts in a course

 It’s not difficult for most people to register their vehicle through the DOT; all you have to do is fill out some paperwork that can be found at your local DMV office, take it in with proof of ownership (i.e., if you are purchasing or being gifted one), and pay an appropriate fee based on how many vehicles are registered under your name.

What is the process for registering my golf carts as street legal? First, you’ll need to go down to your city hall or county courthouse, where you should find information about what forms are required and other details relating specifically to this type of case. If you’re uncertain about what to do, it’s worth consulting with a lawyer before you make any decisions.

golf carts in the course

No, they are not always considered as such. For example, back in 2009, the New York State DMV made an official declaration that golf cars were prohibited from public roads and sidewalks. They have since reversed their decision after much opposition because of safety concerns – but this is just one example of how things can change over time or by region; so be sure that your area considers them legally registered if you want to drive around with confidence knowing there are no consequences for doing so.

Most states require that off-road vehicles have safety equipment such as headlights, tail lights, turn signals, brake lights, and seat belts to be registered.

There are other things to consider too when it comes to golf carts as well. For example, you also need a driver’s license and insurance (or proof of not needing them) for your vehicle to be street legal – which is something that should already have been checked before springing for the cart in the first place!

Some states require safety inspections annually or semi-annually, while others do not at all, so check with your local authorities about what they need before making purchases if this is essential information.

 Some cities allow electric scooters or bikes on sidewalks, but they cannot go faster than 15 mph or carry more than two people at a time.

Golf cart maintenance

old golf carts

Some tips for golf cart maintenance include remembering to change the oil every six months or four times a year if you’re using it more often. In addition, check tires for wear and make sure they are correctly inflated; check belts to ensure that there are no cracks in them or signs of excessive heat (signs which would indicate damage); inspect hoses and clamps for any visible leaks; examine brakes on both front and back wheels before driving off into traffic.

In Conclusion

When asking if golf carts are street legal, the appropriate answer would be, maybe. It depends on your location and laws in your area. It’s essential to do your research in determining if your golf cart is street legal with where you live and plan to drive it around. Remember to always think safety first and abide by all of the rules, laws, and regulations when operating your golf cart.