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Driving in Canada

Driving Guide CanadaWhen hiring a car within Canada you must be aware of some of the different rules which the country adheres to. This will enable you to enjoy the variety of destinations and landscapes the country has to offer.

Checklist for driving in Canada:

  • You can drive in Canada for 3 months on your national driving license. However if you are staying longer you must obtain an International Drivers License. Also some car hire companies may only accept an International license so make sure you carry both to avoid confusions.
  • Your passport (especially if your driving licence does not have a photo).

The French language within Canada

Remember the use of the French language within Canada. Some of the information and road signs may be in French as such places as Quebec are mostly bilingual and may just use the French language.

Speed Limits

  • 50 km/h in cities
  • 60-80 km/h in rural areas
  • 80-100 km/h on highways

Safety Tips:

  • Within Canada, seat belts are required at all times within both the front and back seats. Also the use of booster and baby seats are essential for babies and children under 12.
  • Drivers are required to use daytime running lights. You must turn your headlights on whenever you are on the road, no matter what time of the day it is.
  • You must not do right turns on red when in such places as Montreal and Quebec City.

Drinking and Driving Rules

The rules and laws against drinking and driving within Canada are extremely strict. You must completely avoid drinking and entering a vehicle when hiring a car due to the unsafe nature and the extreme penalties which go with it.

Things to be aware of:

  • The weather conditions within winter can be very severe. Make sure you plan in advance when there is icy and snowy weather. If the weather is too extreme, many bridges can be closed and snow tyres are required.
  • Many people may run red lights (although it is illegal and defiantly not advisable) in rural areas. If you are a pedestrian or a driver, be aware of cars skipping lights despite their need to stop. Always pause before crossing any intersection even if you are on a green light.
  • It is a right hand drive on the roads of Canada.
  • Watch out for wildlife crossing the roads. These include Elk, deer and moose which can walk out into the roads carefree, so look out for them!
  • If crossing a border between Canada and the USA, you are unable to bring agricultural items between the countries. These include meats, fruits, vegetables, plants and soil.