Immigrating to Prince Edward Island: How to Get Your Prince Edward Island Driver's Licence

Published on Jul 09, 2012

Prince Edward Island, or PEI, has a straightforward process for immigrants to obtain a drivers licence. When you move to PEI, you will be required to get a provincial licence. How you go about this is fairly similar no matter where you come from, with the exception of certain countries whose citizens are not required to take tests in order to exchange their licence. You will have to present some legal documents, take the required tests, and then will receive your licence.

Countries Exempt from Testing

If you come from one of these countries and hold a full licence, you are exempt from the testing requirement and can simply pay the fees, fill out the forms, present your documents and exchange your licence.

  • United States
  • Austria
  • Germany
  • United Kingdom
  • Northern Ireland
  • Isle of Man
  • Australia
  • France
  • South Korea
  • Japan
  • Switzerland

All other countries are not exempt from testing. This means that you will have to pass written knowledge tests and a road test in order to obtain your PEI licence, proving that you have the skills required to drive here.

Steps to Getting a PEI Licence

No matter what country you are from, you must present specific documentation in order to apply for a licence in Prince Edward Island. This documentation includes:

  • Proof of identity
  • Current licence and a translation or International Drivers Licence
  • Proof of legal status in Canada
  • Proof that you are a resident of PEI

You must present this documentation along with a completed application for a driver licence in PEI, and pay all of the required fees along with the application. The PEI Association for Newcomers assists with obtaining translations if needed.

If you are not among the exempt nations, you will also have to take the required tests. These include a written test proving your knowledge of the rules of the road in PEI and a road test showing your driving skills. To prepare for these tests, you should obtain the PEI Driver's Handbook, which can be downloaded in English and in French here.

Graduated Licensing in PEI

If you do not have a valid licence or do not meet the requirements to obtain a PEI licence, you will have to go through the licensing process as a new driver. PEI has a graduated licence system much like Canada's other provinces. You will go through steps to obtain a full licence.

  • Stage 1: Instruction Permit, also known as Class 7. This allows you to drive under strict circumstances in order to learn. You will be in this stage for one year, which can be reduced if you take a driver education course.
  • Stage 2: Class 5 New Drivers. This stage also lasts a year and has restrictions placed on the driver.
  • Stage 3: Class 5 with reduced restrictions. This final stage lasts another year and places restrictions on blood alcohol level.

Most immigrants to PEI who hold a full licence will not have to go through these stages. Instead they will simply take the tests and complete the application. However, new drivers or drivers who can't prove experience may need to go through these steps.

This system is designed to help new drivers adjust to the road, and is sometimes helpful for recent immigrants if the road system at home is very different. In most cases it is not required. Get the full details on the stages here.

For any questions regarding your licence application process, you can call 902-368-5100.

Prince Edward Island Car Insurance

In PEI you must have a licence and insurance in order to drive. This is a private insurance province where you can obtain car insurance quotes from many companies and compare your rate options. AS with all private insurance, rates are determined by experience and claims in your past in addition to other factors.

Proving that you have a good driving record as well as a claims-free status from your previous insurer can help reduce rates. It's a good idea to obtain a drivers abstract and a letter of experience from your home country before coming to Canada in order to help prove your level of experience. This can make a big difference when it comes to your insurance rates.

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