Laws about Golf Carts in South Carolina

An increasing number of people are driving golf carts in South Carolina. Some people are unaware of the state and local laws that are in place regarding golf carts and their operation. If you are planning to drive a cart, there are some important things that you need to know to stay safe and legal.


Licensed drivers, at least 16 years old, are allowed to drive a golf cart in the state of South Carolina. Unlicensed drivers and children are prohibited from driving this kind of vehicle on any public roads. The presence of a licensed adult does not allow children to drive.


You don’t have to register golf carts in South Carolina. You may choose to use it on your private property and stay off of the roads. However, if you want to drive it on a public road, you must have a permit from the SCDMV . There is a small registration fee. It is required to carry proof that you own the vehicle and that you have liability insurance. Registration of the vehicle is required again to get an updated permit five years. It’s good to practice to update the address on your registration if you move. If you are renting a golf cart, the permit should be supplied by the business that you’re renting from.

The “When and Where”

  • Drive only during daylight hours.
  • Use streets or secondary highways with a posted speed limit of 35 MPH or less.
  • Stay within 4 miles of the address on the permit.
  • Do not drive on sidewalks, multipurpose paths, or in bicycle lanes.
  • Obey all traffic laws.
  • Familiarize yourself with local laws before going out for a ride.

Things To Bring

When driving your golf cart, there are three important things you need to have: your registration, driver’s license, and proof of liability insurance. If you are stopped by law enforcement, you can face the same penalties for not having these items in your possession as you would in any other type of vehicle.

Equipment and Safety

In the state of South Carolina, all golf carts are street legal regardless of what accessories the cart is outfitted with. It’s a good idea to have headlights, brake lights, and turn signals. If you do not have turn signals, you must use your arm to indicate when you are making a turn. Lastly, just like when operating any other type of vehicle, always drive sober and pay attention to your surroundings.