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Exchanges & Foreign Licences

Are you a new resident in Ontario with a driver’s licence from another province or country? It is essential to understand that you must apply for an Ontario driver’s licence within 60 days of residency in the province. At Book Driving Test, we help make this process smooth and efficient.

Why Exchange Your License?

Exchanging your out-of-province or foreign driver’s licence for an Ontario driver’s licence is crucial in ensuring your safety on Ontario roads and highways. The rules, road signs, and driving conditions can vary significantly from one place to another, and having a valid Ontario driver’s licence ensures that you are well informed about local traffic laws and expectations. Each driver’s handbook contains comprehensive information on road rules and safe driving practices specific to the vehicle you intend to drive.
  • To successfully navigate the driver’s licence application process as a newcomer to Ontario, you must consider various factors.
  • The process may differ based on your previous residence or origin.
  • The type of licence you hold or wish to acquire significantly determines the steps you need to follow.
  • The documentation and identification you possess are vital in establishing your eligibility for an Ontario driver’s licence.
  • The number of years of driving experience you have accrued can affect the process.
If you have previous driving experience outside of Ontario, this experience may be considered for licence exchange privileges or foreign licence experience credits. Sometimes, a letter of authentication may be required from your previous jurisdiction. This letter must contain specific information about your licensing experience to be accepted.

Visiting Ontario for Under 3 Months?

  • If your stay is less than three months, your valid out-of-province/country licence is sufficient.
  • No need to visit any drive test centre, but ensure you have insurance, a vehicle permit, and follow local road rules.
  • Read MTO Driver’s Handbook for Ontario traffic laws.

Staying in Ontario for Over 3 Months?

If your stay exceeds three months, get an International Driver’s Permit (IDP) from your country. Obtain one before arriving in Canada.

License Exchanges Agreement

Ontario has a licence agreement with specific provinces, states, and countries. If you are from one of these places, you might be eligible for a licence exchange in Ontario, bypassing some of the usual testing requirements. However, if you hold a learner’s permit, you may receive credit for your driving experience.
Active and retired members of the Canadian military with a DND 404 permit may have certain driver’s licence testing requirements. Those with a DND 404 permit and a valid licence from another Canadian licensing authority issued within the last three years may, with the proper documentation, qualify for Ontario licence classes A, C, D, F, G, and Z endorsements without testing, and they won’t need to surrender their permit.

Application For Foreign License

If you have a driving licence that does not have a licence exchange agreement with Ontario, you may be eligible for credit for your foreign driving experience. You must still pass all necessary tests to obtain your Ontario driver’s licence.

Protected Persons And Refugee Driver’s License

For protected persons and refugee claimants whose foreign driver’s licence was seized by the Canada Border Services Agency, there are options:
  • Submit a certified copy of the seized driver’s licence stamped by the Canada Border Services Agency.
  • If unable to submit the foreign driver’s licence or a photocopy, complete a self-declaration indicating the foreign driving experience amount.
  • If the self-declaration demonstrates at least 24 months of driving experience, individuals are exempt from mandatory waiting periods under Ontario’s Graduated Licensing System.

Additional Requirements

  • The foreign driver’s licence or stamped photocopy can expire by up to one year at the time of application and must be in English, French, or meet document translation requirements.
  • The driver’s licence must be from the country of citizenship.
  • The applicant must provide one of the following original documents at the time of application:
    • Claim acknowledgement and Return Notice
    • Refugee Protection Document
    • Decision Notice
    • Status Verification

For individuals from Ukraine

  • They can complete the self-declaration for foreign driving experience, which applies to their new Ontario driver record.
  • Drivers with at least 24 months of driving experience through self-declaration are exempt from mandatory waiting periods and must complete all tests.
  • If less than 24 months are self-declared, wait times between tests are reduced based on driving experience.

Additional Requirements for Ukrainian Applicants

  • The Ukrainian driver’s licence can expire by up to one year at the time of application and must be in English, French, or meet current document translation requirements.
  • The applicant must provide their Ukrainian Passport and valid Visa, and all other identification requirements.