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Your foreign driver’s licence may be valid for only three to six months after you arrive in Canada. So it is wise to get an international driver’s license before you leave your home country. Regardless, you will eventually need to take a driving test to obtain a Canadian driver’s licence.

Licences are issued by the province or territory in which you live. In order to receive a licence, you must pass several tests: a vision test, a written examination and a road test. In some provinces, a minimum of 30 days is required between writing the knowledge test and taking a road test.

I drove in my homeland for 24 years and yet I still flunked the knowledge test and barely passed the road test here, so I’d recommend studying for your test and taking some driving lessons again. It will make the process easier.

Also, you must be at least 16 years old before you can be tested for a driver’s licence in Canada. Some provinces have a graduated licensing system whereby young drivers can be restricted to driving only in daylight hours during their probation period.

When applying for a driver’s licence, the following documents may be necessary for proof of name, signature and address: ¦A passport ¦A Permanent Resident (PR) Card ¦Proof of address (bank statement or other public office received mail) ¦A driver’s licence from your home country, but an international driver’s licence is best

Incidentally, a driver’s licence is one of the best pieces of identification you can have, since it shows your photograph, signature and address.

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