Getting Your Driver's License

Are you ready to get your driver’s license? Do you know where to start? Do you know what to study? Below are some tips and links that can help you obtain your provincial or territorial drivers license.

The Basics:

  • In Canada, driver's licences are issued by the government of the province or territory in which you reside.
  • Each province and territory has their own requirements for driver’s licenses. Many provinces use the graduated driver licensing program for new drivers, and legal driving age is determined on a province-by-province basis.
  • A driver's licence includes your name, address, signature, date of birth, gender, height, card issue and expiry dates, as well as codes showing what class of vehicles you may drive and under what conditions.

Steps to Getting Your Licence:

  • First, purchase a ministry approved driver’s handbook from your province or territory. This book will provide you with the rules of the road, safe driving practices and how to get your licence to drive a car, van or small truck.
  • Once you have studied the handbook, call your local Ministry of Transportation office to book your exam for your learner’s permit. This exam will evaluate your vision and your written knowledge of the rules of the road and road signs.
  • Although not mandatory, it is highly recommended that new drivers take a ministry approved Driver Training Course.
  • With your learner’s permit in hand, take the next 12 months (less in some provinces and territories if you have completed an approved driver training course) to practice your road skills. Note: Drivers with a learner’s permit must always be accompanied by an individual who is 25 years old or older who has a valid driver's licence (Class 1/2/3/4 or 5) and he or she must sit beside you in the front passenger seat.
  • Finally, your last step will be to call your local Ministry of Transportation office to make arrangements to schedule your road test. This test will evaluate your driving skills, including highway driving and parallel parking.

Provincial and Territorial Ministries Responsible for Transportation:

Helpful Web Sites:

  • The key to safe driving is to pay attention to the road at all times. The Highway Safety and Road Conditions Web page provides you with tips on how to be as safe as possible on the road.
  • The ecoENERGY for Personal Vehicles Web site will provide you with helpful tips and decision-making tools on buying, driving and maintaining your vehicle to reduce fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.
  • If you are planning to drive in the United States, the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative requires you to have certain documents with you before crossing the border.