Need to get a driver's license...
June 12, 2006 12:21 PM   Subscribe

Where is the closest or cheapest place I can fly to from Toronto, Ontario to take a driving test that, when I come back, the acquired license can be swapped or recognized for a full Ontario driver's license (ie, so I don't have to go thru that graduated crap)?
posted by Manhasset to Travel & Transportation (16 answers total)
I'm pretty sure you'd have to live wherever you fly to get your licence, so, to save some time, just do that graduated crap.
posted by genevieve at 12:27 PM on June 12, 2006

Ugh. I knew this would fucking happen. zeoslap, do you have an answer to my question or not? If not, please bugger off.

And for anyone else coming in to lecture, I already went thru the graduating thing. I had both a motorcycle and car license. For reasons I will not go into, I was unable to renew them before they expired.

Now, anyone know anyplace in the world where I can vacation and take a driving test that will be a fully valid license when I return? Thank you.
posted by Manhasset at 12:30 PM on June 12, 2006

I would recommend going to a smaller town in Ontario. I did my first test (not G2 exit) in Brockville and it was much easier. I failed my exit test twice in Toronto but got it on the third time in east-end Ottawa (Gloucester).
posted by Succa at 12:35 PM on June 12, 2006

Can't be done. A valid license from another country, issued last week, will not show that you've had two or more years of driving experience, so they won't let you trade it in for a full license.

On the other hand, you can renew an expired driver's license in Ontario up to three years after expiration without redoing the graduated licensing, so I have a hard time believing that your license is well and truly expired.
posted by jellicle at 12:43 PM on June 12, 2006

To echo jellicle, my Ontario driver's licence was expired for almost 3 years, and I was able to renew it without re-taking any tests (apart from the eye exam I think). Take your licence to the Ministry of Transportation, pony up about $75 I think, and presto.
posted by Robot Johnny at 12:51 PM on June 12, 2006

jellicle, is that the rule? That international (or other province) licenses have to be more than 2 years old to "trade in"?

you can renew an expired driver's license in Ontario up to three years

Where is this documented? Someone else told me it was 1 year. When I called about it the person told me there was no grace period.

On preview: wtf? That's totally not what they told me on the phone. My motorcycle license had been expired a few years but the car one just last Oct--but of course they're both on the same physical ID. Would that have something to do with it? (I was not interested in renewing my M license, just the G.)
posted by Manhasset at 12:54 PM on June 12, 2006

It's true, Manhasset. See here:
"If a driver's licence has been expired for more than one, but fewer than three years, you must visit a DriveTest centre to complete a vision test. If your licence has been expired for over three years but not more than 10 years, you have to reapply under Graduated Licensing at a DriveTest centre—the mandatory waiting periods are waived. If your licence has expired for over ten years, you have to reapply under graduated licensing at a DriveTest centre and serve all the mandatory waiting periods."
This applies to all vehicle licenses except G1, G2, M1, and M2 (the graduated ones).
posted by Robot Johnny at 12:57 PM on June 12, 2006

Thanks very much.
posted by Manhasset at 12:58 PM on June 12, 2006

This doesn't answer your question, but it might be useful to people who search for this answer:

Just FWIW, there's no such time restriction in BC. My motorcycle license has been expired for nearly twenty years, but when I took my Young Driver's (car) training and when I did my road test, it was for a full, non-graduated Class 5 automobile license.
posted by solid-one-love at 1:03 PM on June 12, 2006

Random information: In France you can trade a Quebec drivers license in for a free french license. But they won't accept any other Canadian provinces. To trade my Alberta license in, it would have cost me hundreds (in driving courses).
posted by blue_beetle at 1:20 PM on June 12, 2006

Solid-One-Love, I think maybe that has changed now, if you look at the licensing info for BC. You have to produce your current full-privilege license.
posted by acoutu at 1:51 PM on June 12, 2006

There appears to be nothing there that contraindicates what I wrote, acoutu. Unlike Ontario, BC doesn't drop you back into the graduated program just because you let a license lapse for a long period of time. ("no such time restriction" in my previous comment is referring to a length of time since a license has lapsed, not the number of years that a license was held).
posted by solid-one-love at 1:59 PM on June 12, 2006

Just to reiterate with my own experience, I was able to get a full driver's license in Australia by showing them my American one, but I had to have a letter from the American DMV stating how long I'd had it before they'd let me skip the graduated system.
posted by web-goddess at 2:32 PM on June 12, 2006

Solid-One-Love, it does mention that you need a current license. If the poster's license has expired, then there is no current license....?
posted by acoutu at 10:09 AM on June 13, 2006

It does mention that you need a current license for what, exactly? I suspect we're not talking about the same thing.

What I am saying (and all I am saying) is that merely having let a license lapse more than ten years previously does not require going back into the graduated licensing program in BC, unlike in Ontario. My BC motorcycle license had been expired for 16 years when I took the road test and got my BC Class 5 (non-graduated, no restriction) automobile license. Someone operating under the same circumstances could do the same thing today. The rules have not changed.

I am not speaking to the original querent's situation in any way (as I said) other than comparing the rules between the two provinces, to help other people who might search for similar info. I am not talking about some rhetorical non-BC resident without a license trying to get a license in BC.
posted by solid-one-love at 2:40 PM on June 13, 2006

Solid-One-Love, I thought we were talking about newcomers to BC who needed to get a license. The link I provided has info for those people. I see now that you were on another subject. :)
posted by acoutu at 1:33 PM on June 14, 2006

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