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Wait times to be posted for five busiest DMV locations

By MICHAEL COUSINEAU
New Hampshire Union Leader

May 15. 2018 8:54PM
Diane Lynch of Belmont, left, gets her paperwork in order for her Real ID at the Division of Motor Vehicles in Concord on Tuesday. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)

CONCORD — People wanting to limit their wait to renew their driver’s license can check wait times on their phone or computer before showing up.

Starting Thursday, wait times will be posted for the state’s five busiest Division of Motor of Vehicles offices — in Concord, Nashua, Manchester, Dover and Salem.

“It’ll be a nice service,” Alton resident Clare Bolster said while filling out paperwork at the Concord DMV office Tuesday.

“I brought a book because I thought I’d be waiting at least an hour,” she said.

Starting Thursday, information will be posted on www.nh.gov/dmv, listing the current wait time and how many people are in line at each office.

“Other states have done it and it’s proven to be a very good tool to use,” said DMV spokesman Larry Crowe.

The Manchester office handles an average 5,985 customers a month.

Online wait times will be updated by a queuing system that tracks the wait time from when a customer receives a ticket at the greeter counter and the time the person is called to the counter to complete a transaction.

“It’s probaby a good idea,” said Diane Lynch of Belmont while filling out paperwork. “I had no idea the time it would take, so I decided to block out the afternoon.”

A television screen in the office listed the wait time for a driver’s license at 35 minutes at one point during mid-afternoon Tuesday.

“We are continually looking for ways to improve a customer’s experience at our offices,” DMV Director Elizabeth Bielecki said. “By providing wait time information online, our customers will be able to plan their DMV visit to fit within their daily schedule.”

Jared Plante of Weare came to apply for a commercial driver’s license and thought checking wait times online was a good idea.

“Most people are on their phones 24/7,” Plante said.

He said he doesn’t look forward to DMV visits and said, “It’s the state. Anything with the state is slow.”

Crowe said wait times can exceed an hour at times, and wait times typically are longest on Mondays and Fridays as well as at the beginning and end of each month.

Dylan LaBranche of Bow said it will be helpful if people have a spare 30 minutes and can check to see how short the line is.

In the end, “you know you’re going to wait,” said LaBranche, who was there with a friend. “Be patient.”

mcousineau@unionleader.com


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