GETTING A LICENSE

If you live in Ontario, you must be at least 16 years old and have a valid Ontario driver’s license to drive in the province. A newcomer to Ontario is required to apply for an Ontario driver’s licence within 60 days of taking up residence in the province.

Graduated Licensing
As of April 1, 1994, all new drivers applying for their first car or motorcycle license enter Ontario’s Graduated Licensing System (GLS). Graduated licensing lets new drivers get driving experience and skills gradually. The two-step licensing process takes at least 20 months to complete.
To apply for a license, you must be at least 16 years old and pass a vision test and a test of your knowledge of the rules of the road and traffic signs. After you pass these tests, you will get a Class G1 or M1 license and a driver information package for new drivers. You must pass two road tests to become fully licensed.

New drivers earn full driving privileges in two stages and have five years to complete the program (G1, G2 or M2) and graduate to a full license (Class G or M).

Graduated Licensing for Automobile Drivers

Class G1
New drivers of passenger vehicles learn to drive with six important conditions with a G1 license. A new driver must hold a G1 license for a minimum of 12 months before attempting the G1 road test. This time can be reduced to eight months if you successfully complete an approved driver education course. Drivers earn more privileges after passing their G1 road test.
As a G1 driver, you are required to:

• maintain a zero blood alcohol level while driving;
• be accompanied by a fully licensed driver, who has at least four years driving experience, and a blood alcohol level of less than .05 per cent, in case he/she needs to take over the wheel;
• ensure the accompanying driver is the only other person in the front seat;
• ensure the number of passengers in the vehicle is limited to the number of working seat belts;
• refrain from driving on Ontario’s “400-series” highways or on high speed expressways such as the Queen Elizabeth Way, Don Valley Parkway, Gardiner Expressway, E.C. Row Expressway and the Conestoga Parkway;
• refrain from driving between midnight and 5:00 a.m.

Note: If your accompanying driver is a driving instructor licensed in Ontario, you may drive on any road.

Class G2
New drivers must hold a G2 licence for a minimum of 12 months before they can attempt the G2 road test. At this level, you have more privileges because of your driving experience. You may drive without an accompanying driver on all Ontario roads anytime. However, you are still required to:

• maintain a zero blood alcohol level while driving;
• ensure the number of passengers in the vehicle is limited to the number of working seat belts.
Our Graduated Licensing System has been a resounding success in reducing death and injury among novice drivers. Ontario research shows that new teenage drivers are almost three times more likely to be involved in a fatal or serious collision when they are carrying teenage passengers. In fact, research shows the more teenage passengers, the higher the risk.
To further protect youth on our roads, effective September 1, 2005:
• The number of young passengers that teen G2 drivers can carry will be limited from midnight to 5 a.m.
• Initially, G2 drivers 19 or under can carry only one passenger aged 19 or under.
• After the first six months, and until the G2 driver earns a full G license or turns 20, they can carry only three passengers aged 19 or under.

These restrictions will not apply if the G2 driver is accompanied by a full “G” licensed driver (with at least four years driving experience) in the front seat, or if the passengers are immediate family members.
Thirty-one jurisdictions in Canada and the U.S. have some form of teenage passenger restrictions in effect.