Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Just Landed II - Driver's License (Updated)

As I mentioned in the "Welcome to Canada Checklist" post, one of the important things to do is get an Ontarian Driver's License. It's important not just because you need it to drive a car but because it's considered as your main Photo ID; specially as a proof of address.

`However, you can use a foreign driver's license for 60 days only after you arrive in Canada (to drive not as ID). After that, you will need to take a driving test and get an Ontario driver's license.

Generally speaking, you need to get "G1" license, which is mainly a knowledge written test, and then after passing this test and practicing driving for a period between 8 to 12 months then you can apply for the Full Driver's License "G". Provided that with G1 you can only drive with a companion who has Full G license.

However, this is for people who don't have a license from their countries and have no driving experience. For those who has a valid foreign driver's license:

  • If you are a licensed driver with two or more years of driving experience from U.S.A., Japan, Korea, Switzerland, Germany, France, Great Britain and Austria you may get full class license privileges without taking a knowledge or road test.
  • Drivers from any other country:
    Now, if the license you are exchanging is not from Canada, Canadian Forces-Europe, U.S.A., Japan, Korea, Switzerland, Germany, France, Great Britain and Austria, you must present official, written confirmation of your driving experience.
    Written confirmation can include an original letter from the originating licensing agency (such as the ministry of transportation in your country or state), or from the Embassy, Consulate, or High Commissioner's offices representing the country. The accompanying letter must be on official letter head and written in either English or French.
    This letter must include information about:
    • The date first licensed
    • License expiry date
    • Class of license
    • That the license was valid for the relevant period of time for the purposes of exchange and experience
    • [Update] You need to translate all the documents from an Authorized translator in Ontario to English or French. So don't bother translating them abroad, and don't get them stamped from the Canadian Embassy in your country.

Now, is the authorized company from Ontario Government for tests. Visit their site for more information and booking. you can also contact the Ontario Ministry of Transportation for information about licenses and driving rules at 1-800-387- 3445.

You can buy a cheap car at the beginning and then buy a decent car ... I'm ganna teach you a a nice trick ... most of people here in Canada buy cars with Lease or Financing, so if for some reason they can't pay the bills then the bank will Seize the car and sell it in auction for LESS price. Here is one of the Seized cars websites that has GREAT deals:

Also a great place to find a good car is at Yahoo: Yahoo! Autos you can get a dealer quotes for a new car, here is how it works:

* Up to 4 qualified local dealers will call or email you with a price.
* Having a competitive price quote in hand will give you the advantage before you set foot on the lot.
* This service is totally FREE, with no obligation to buy.

Get quotes from Yahoo! Autos

So, if you decided to buy a car you must register it with the provincial motor vehicle licensing agency,and you must get car insurance. It is illegal to drive without car insurance. Car insurance can be costly, but it protects you and other drivers in case of an accident.

You can also rent a car for a day, a week or longer, from a car rental company. Most car rental companies can give you information about driving rules.

Car rental companies charge you a fee based on the amount of time you have the car and the distance you travel in the car. You will also need to buy accident insurance from the rental company and pay for the gas you use.


Anonymous said...

Hi Nabil, could you give informations about driving's rules, prices to take the license, time to take, questions about the exam? Thanks

Unknown said...

Heyy Guys ...

I've just got my G2 ... I passed because I got to know an excellent driving instructor. I'd like to refer you to him, his name is Rashid Al-Asadi
Cell: (416) 835-9514
Land Line: (905)848-4085

I assure you that you will pass from the first time ... good luck :)


jas said...

Hi, Nabil I no your in Ontario I wanted to no if the same getting your Driver's License exchanged from uk to canadian applies in BC thanks.

Anonymous said...

im from northern ireland and have a uk driving licence. we were going to drive across canada from ontario to relocate in alberta so i looked into geting a canadian licence.
So apparantly only ontario and alberta have the reciprocal licence program with great britain (ie.UK excluding northern ireland)
this means my experience is recognised but not my driving tests so i have to do theory and G2 tests to get my alberta licence (although i can do them on the same day if i want.)
i assume it would be the same process switching from uk-bc licence as the reciprocal licence program wouldnt exist.
possible loophole: it may be possible to go into a licensing center in alberta and get your uk licence switched to an alberta licence and then switch that one for a bc licence although you would probably need bills showing your name and an alberta address for them to issue the alberta licence.

* said...

Hi Nabil
I am curious about the province change license change policy.
Is it true that (unlike UAE where I can drive in all 7 emirates with one licese), that I am required to get a diff license?
We are moving in a few months time, and am cluless abt a lot of stuff.
i shall go thru your website as it looks very interesting and helpful.

Unknown said...

Hi Kaya,

Yes that's correct, you need to get a new Driver's license for each province. However, you just exchange the license, you don't need to go thru the exams again. I guess there will be small fee for that as well.


Trillian said...

Where can I exchange my Quebec driver's license in Toronto?

Trillian said...

Does anyone know what Toronto locations will exchange a Quebec driver's license?

Anonymous said...

How do I get license in Vancouver Canada? I do have UAE driver license but I'm currently back in my home country. What are the requirements to get Drivers license in Canada since I can't get any more documents from UAE.

Chuck Rowland said...

This is a really useful site and good comments. I am setting up a website and blog to assist people arriving in Nova Scotia.

I am available to advise on Nova Scotia differences and there are a few. Driving License as an example.

Everyone, even Canadians, arriving in Nova Scotia have to take the written test using NS rules within 6 months. Same with vehicle documentation 6 months if from elsewhere.

There is a handbook downloadable. In order to get a NS driving License Non license holders have to take the written and practical tests. Larger vehicle driving requires a medical as well as the previous two tests.

This can be found by going to Access Nova Scotia website.

Unknown said...

Hi Chuck,

You are more than welcome to be part of our experts team and write posts about NS here. Let me know.


Anonymous said...

found your site on today and really liked it.. i bookmarked it and will be back to check it out some more later

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