An Ontario G1 licence is the first stage in Ontario’s graduated licensing program (followed by the G2 licence, and finally the full G licence). From start to finish the process takes about 20 months to complete; however, you have five full years to complete it.
If your G1 licence is about to expire and you have not completed the process, you will be sent a notice with your options. The final resort, you can retain your licence by passing a test and repaying the five-year licensing fee. If you have not submitted for “re-qualification” before your licence expires you will have to start the graduated licensing system over again.
How to Get Your Ontario G1 Licence
To apply for a G1 licence you must be at least 16 years old, pass an eye test, and a written test about the rules of the road and traffic signs. Once these three requirements are met, you will get your G1 licence.
Being a new driver, with a G1 licence in hand, it’s important to understand G1 licensing requirements and restrictions. A G1 licence is highly restrictive and if you do not follow the rules, you could be faced with a licence suspension along with any associated fine. This is in addition to the auto insurance ramifications that will catch up with you once you’ve received your G2 and full G licence. Companies that provide auto insurance in Ontario will factor in your G1 driving record, including traffic tickets, accidents, or suspensions, when calculating your rates for any future auto insurance policy.
Thinking about getting a G1 licence? Make sure you read up on the Official MTO Driver’s Handbook to learn more about the G1 test.
G1 Licence Conditions and Restrictions
In addition to obeying the rules of the road like all other drivers, further restrictions are placed on new learners. Novice drivers holding a G1 licence:
1.Can only drive when they have a "zero" blood alcohol level – without exception.
2.Can only drive when there is another G-licensed driver with a minimum of four years of driving experience sitting in the passenger seat.
3.Must ensure this person is the only passenger in the front seat. They must have a blood alcohol level below 0.05 percent, unless they are 21-years-old or younger. In this case they too must have a zero blood alcohol level.
4.Must ensure all passengers wear a functioning seat belt. That being said, the number of passengers must not exceed the amount of seat belts available.
5.Cannot drive on any 400-series highways or high-speed expressways (roads with a posted speed limit over 80km/h).
6.Cannot drive between the hours of midnight and 5:00 a.m.
There is one exception to rule five above. As a G1 driver, you can drive on any road (including major highways) if the driver accompanying you is a licensed Ontario driving instructor.
Graduating from Your G1 Licence to Getting a G2
Before you can get your G2 licence, you must pass a road test that will test your basic driving skills. Usually, this test can be taken after you’ve had your G1 for 12 months. This can be fast-tracked however, if you’ve taken an approved driver’s training course. With a driver’s training course under your belt, you can take your G2 road test after eight months.
The Full G Licence
Before you can get a full G licence you must have your G2 licence for at least 12 months (or 8 months with driver's training) AND pass the G2 road test. After successfully passing the G2 road test, you are now a full G licence holder and are older than 21 you can enjoy driving in Ontario without restrictions. If you are 21 and younger there are restrictions.