It continues to happen all the time.

Garden State residents are sometimes waiting months to make an appointment to go into a New Jersey Motor Vehicle Agency office to renew their expiring driver’s license. But according to the head of the MVC, in almost all cases this is an unnecessary waste of time.

“Too many people are making appointments for license renewals that they can do online, and apparently they think that if they go into the office for a license renewal, they’ll get their license in hand. We don’t do that anymore,” New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission Chief Administrator Sue Fulton said.

“You can wait for weeks to get an appointment to renew your license, and you will walk out with the same paper receipt that you can get right now on your computer if you renew online.”

Fulton explained there used to be a law that after you got a driver’s license with a new photo, you could "skip the trip" the next time your license was up for renewal. A more recent law makes the ID picture for for 12 years.

A  Real ID license can be renewed online as well.

"Please do not make an appointment for that license renewal. You’re not going to get a license in hand. You’re going to wait a lot longer. Just do it online," she said. “Roughly 80% of transactions can be done online and if you can do your transaction online then you shouldn’t be making an appointment.”

Transactions that have to be completed in person include commercial driver’s license transactions, out-of-state transfers, new permits, initial registrations and getting a Real ID.

You can contact reporter David Matthau at

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