Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the changes Friday and said they would reduce on-site congestion at DMV offices while helping people keep socially distant from one another and avoid transmission of COVID-19.
People who complete the test online will cut their time in the DMV office by about 90 percent. The 50-question test takes 45 to 60 minutes to complete. The actual application for the permit takes only five minutes to complete, and this must still be completed in office.
Meanwhile, New Yorkers who live in the 11 counties served by state-run DMV offices can now register their vehicles online, and avoid the trip to the DMV office altogether.
The only such county in or near the Capital Region is Albany County.
But the state DMV is working with the 51 counties that run their own DMV offices to expand online registration statewide.
The state DMV noted that more than 60 other types of transactions can be handled online. It is trying to steer people toward computers and away from their local DMV office. Those who do want to visit a DMV office will require an appointment for each service they need.