Golf carts and ride-on lawn mowers

Find out the laws around the use of golf carts, golf buggies and ride-on lawn mowers.

How are these vehicles classified?

A vehicle described as a golf car, golf buggy or ride-on lawn mower, is not considered to be a motor vehicle for the purposes of the law provided all of the following conditions are met:

  • it is designed mainly for use outside the road system; and
  • it is not used to travel on roads or road related areas (such as footpaths and nature strips) for more than two kilometres at a time in one direction; and
  • it is only being used for the purpose for which it was manufactured.

When can these vehicles be used?

Where the above three conditions are met, these vehicles are not considered ‘motor vehicles’ and are exempt from registration. Because golf cars, golf buggies and ride-on lawn mowers do not have the safety features of a regular vehicle, their access to road and road related areas is limited to:

  • golf car or buggy – for the purposes of playing golf;
  • ride-on lawn mower – limited to its use of mowing lawns.

Who can drive these vehicles?

No driver license is required to operate these vehicles provided they are being used in accordance with the above conditions.

Users should not operate these vehicles under the influence of alcohol or drugs, should take extreme caution when using them after dark, travel at safe speeds and must not travel on footpaths, bike paths and shared paths.

If these vehicles are used for purposes other than the manufactured intent, or outside the above conditions then they are subject to the same laws as any other motor vehicle. This includes laws related to driver licensing and registration.

Where a golf car, golf buggy or ride-on lawn mower is not considered a motor vehicle they are not be covered by third party personal injury insurance. If these vehicles have an accident that does not involve another motor vehicle, they are not be covered by TAC.

It is advised that an insurance policy should be taken out to cover the golf cart, golf buggy or ride-on lawn mower.

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