AUSTIN, Texas - The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is offering extended office hours at participating driver license (DL) offices across the state, beginning in 2021.
Starting Monday, Jan. 4, office hours at the designated offices will be expanded to 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Friday. Current business hours at those offices are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Customers can begin making appointments for these new time slots immediately, according to DPS.
The longer office hours are an initiative to help customers still needing services due to the COVID-19 DL office closures in 2020. The offices were selected based on the volume of customer transactions, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.
DPS also implemented Saturday hours to help address this issue, and appointments are still available at many offices on Dec. 12 and Dec. 19 of this year for renewals, replacements, and election identification certificates. Customers whose licenses expired while offices were closed should make an appointment as soon as possible.
Online renewals still a convenient option
Many Texans are eligible to skip the trip to the office entirely by renewing their DL/ID card or changing their address online at Texas.gov. Customers can also renew by phone at 1-866-357-3639 (1-866-DL RENEW). The requirements and cost for online and phone renewal are the same as in-person transactions.
Scheduling an appointment
DPS launched a new appointment solution when DL offices reopened in May, and all services are now conducted by appointment only. To schedule an appointment or check availability, visit the online appointment scheduler. If you are unable to find an appointment at the office of your choice, check back for availability at that office or other locations nearby. Please check often as availability does change.
The appointment system is designed to provide additional convenience, reducing the time Texans wait in line. Customers can book appointments for a specific day and time, up to six months in advance, and show up 30 minutes or less before their scheduled time. Customers can check-in using the kiosk inside the office or from their mobile device.
A reminder, if you are unable to make your scheduled appointment, please change it ahead of time. Customers not showing up has become a major issue statewide, according to DPS. From May 26 through Nov. 30, approximately 27% of people were no-shows for their appointments.
To help combat that issue, many offices are offering customers without an appointment a spot on a “standby” list. These customers are required to wait in the office and are assisted in the event of a cancelation or no-show. The number of standby appointments available is limited to ensure all customers who are placed on the list will be served by the end of the day.
Additionally, a limited number of same-day appointments will be available at each DL office. These appointments are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Customers who book these appointments can leave the DL office until their designated time.