As a new driver, it’s important to understand G1 licensing requirements and what restrictions you must adhere to in order to maintain your G1 license. Otherwise, you could be faced with a license suspension or steep fines for fewer infractions than a fully licensed driver. Many companies that provide auto insurance in Ontario are hesitant to insure drivers who have already had traffic tickets or accidents before even receiving their full license.
Essentially, there are six conditions placed on G1 drivers during the waiting period that must pass before they can take their G1 exit test to earn their G2 license. This waiting period is a minimum of twelve months unless the G1 driver has successfully completed a provincially approved driving course from an accredited school, which shortens the wait to eight months.
The interim conditions for G1 licensees include:
1. G1 drivers must have a “zero” blood alcohol level while driving – without exception.
2. G1 drivers must always drive with a licensed driver who has a minimum of four years of licensed driving experience in the passenger seat. The licensed driver must have a blood alcohol level below 0.05% – in case the G1 driver needs to be relieved.
3. The licensed driver (with minimum four years experience as noted above) must be the only other person in the front seat with the G1 driver – to ensure maximum concentration.
4. The number of passengers in the vehicle cannot exceed the number of functioning seat belts.
5. G1 licensed drivers must refrain from driving on 400-series highways.
6. G1 licensed drivers cannot drive between the hours of midnight and 5:00 am.
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.
Before you are awarded your G1 license, you first need to pass a vision test and a written test. The written test consists of two types of questions – both answered in a multiple choice format. The first section of the test consists of written questions, and the second section shows visual images of signs. If you are nervous about the test, or have failed previously, there are online tests you can take to get accustomed to the questions and prepare yourself for successful results.
As a G1 licensed driver, vehicles and insurance are likely new to you, and though exciting, may leave you with some questions. Here are the top questions asked by G1 drivers and about G1 drivers:
Can a G1 driver buy a car?
There’s nothing restricting a G1 driver from buying a car, licensed or not – but you likely won’t be able to insure it to drive until you have your G2 license. Make sure you contact your potential insurance broker or company before buying!
Do you need insurance with a G1 licence?
Generally you cannot get insurance with a G1 license, as you are not yet a qualified driver. G1 drivers are usually covered under their parent or guardian’s car insurance policy until they have secured a G2 license.
Does the insurance company need to be notified of a G1 licensed driver in the household?
Yes – your parent or guardian should notify their insurance company that you have obtained a G1 license. Generally there is no charge to the insured for adding a G1 driver to any auto insurance policy. More importantly, the insurance company must be notified when a G1 licensed driver achieves a G2 license, as G2 licensed drivers can operate motor vehicles independently and therefore must be named as licensed on the auto insurance policy. Even as an occasional driver, this can carry a significant added cost.
How many demerit points is a G1 driver permitted?
G1 drivers in Ontario are permitted six demerit points before a license suspension. However, there are two factors to consider. First, demerit points remain on your license for two years after they have been assigned, so receiving six points while on a G1 (probationary) license means that a license suspension could be imminent if you keep up the same pattern. Secondly, since receiving six demerits at one time is highly unlikely, the points will likely be viewed as an indication of bad driving habits. This means that, especially upon finally receiving a G2 license, the premiums to secure car insurance as a new driver will be exponentially greater. Even looking for cheap car insurance premiums online will likely be a challenge with that many points, a license suspension, and minimal driving history.
G1 License in other Provinces
To find out more about G1 licenses/Class 7 (learners permit) in other provinces, click the following links:
Find out more information on G1 restrictions, visit icandrive.ca