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How to get DMV transactions done as DMV reopens, requires appointments

DMV by appointment.jpg
Posted at 3:56 PM, Jun 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-17 17:24:34-04

NORFOLK, Va. - As the Virginia Department Of Motor Vehicles reopens offices across Virginia, people are being instructed to go on its website and book appointments for transactions.

But when you go to its website, you might not see appointments available at any locations near you.

When you select a DMV office, a calendar appears where appointment slots would appear. Some other details you may have also noticed: no availabilities for days, weeks, even months, and the message “No appointments available this month.”

“When you log in, you'll see that 30-day window, and each day, you'll see a day added to the end of that 30 days,” Jessica Cowardin, the public relations and media liaison for the Virginia DMV told News 3. “Right now, we're offering a 30-day availability for appointments and we're monitoring and adjusting as we go."

The move was introduced as Gov. Ralph Northam started reopening Virginia and DMV offices while still maintaining social distancing protocols.

"We're encouraging people first to go online and see if you can take care of your business online or through the mail," Cowardin said.

Some of those online transactions include registration renewals, turning in license plates and title replacements, among other specific transactions. Transactions such as first-time vehicle registrations, new titles and disabled parking tags need to be done in person.

There are no details as to how many slots are available or added, or how fast those slots fill up.

Cowardin said the DMV is "encouraging customers to cancel their appointment if they're unable to make it because that will open up an additional availability for other customers."

She added that each week, a new batch of DMV locations are opening up across the Commonwealth. The offices currently have extended hours and safety measures put in place for everyone's safety.

As to when they can reopen entirely to everyone without the need for an appointment, that is still unknown. DMV Select locations, locally, remain closed until further notice.

"We're working hard to safely equip and reopen offices as soon as possible," Cowardin said.

In the meantime, she suggested to keep checking the website for appointment openings. The DMV has a chart on its website to specify what transactions you can do online, by phone, by mail, and at DMV Select locations.