Getting a Nova Scotia Drivers License: Requirements and Things to Know
Are you ready to start driving in Nova Scotia? Congratulations!
The process will take time and a lot of effort. This guide will make the process simpler. It will give you insight into the licensing process and tips on how to complete every step of the process.
How To Proceed
Start Studying the Driver’s Handbook
Many people try to get a drivers license without studying the Nova Scotia driver’s handbook. This is not a good idea. This handbook is one of the easiest ways to study and will teach you almost everything that you will need to drive in Nova Scotia. You can purchase a handbook from your local Ministry of Transportation. It is a good idea to pick this guide up first since it will make the rest of the licensing process so much easier.
Read Your Handbook Carefully
Once you have your handbook, start reading it. This guide will feature information on road signs and traffic safety as well as other topics. Since you will be taking a road signs test and general knowledge test, make sure that you really pay attention during these sections. It is a good idea to get a friend to review the information with you.
Make Sure that You Qualify
Once you have carefully studied the information in the guide make sure that you meet the minimum qualifications. You should know that the qualifications for driving in Canada vary from province to province. Each province is responsible for setting their own requirements, fees and restrictions for drivers. In Nova Scotia you must be at least 16 years old. You will have to fulfill a graduated licensing program and will need to have a learners permit for at least 6 months. You will also have to pass a vision test.
Schedule Your Test
When you are ready, contact the government and schedule your permit test (we strongly recommend that before that you practice our FREE Nova Scotia Practice Test). This test will consist of a vision test, a road signs test and a road rules test. If you don’t meet minimum vision requirements you can retest with corrective lenses. You will need to get 16 out of 20 questions correct on the other 2 tests. The test may be administered on paper or orally. This license will cost $22.56.
Start the Learner’s Stage
Once you pass your test and fill out the needed paperwork you will receive a learner’s permit (class 7 license). This permit will allow you to start driving on roads in Nova Scotia. There are a few restrictions though. You must have a licensed driver with a class 5 license or higher with you at all times. You cannot drink any alcohol before driving and must have a blood alcohol level of 0%. This stage will last for 3 months if you take a drivers education training course or 6 months without.
Take Driver’s Education
If you want extra help getting your license and if you want the process to be a little easier, you should take driver’s education. These courses help you to prepare for your road test and will provide valuable information and training. Plus when you take driver’s education you can qualify for your license twice as fast as drivers that choose to skip the course. Find Nova Scotia driving schools here.
Schedule Your Road Test
After you have met the minimum time requirement for holding a permit, you can schedule your driving test. Contact your local testing center and make an appointment.
Take Your Road Test
Your road test will ensure that you are ready to drive on your own. During the test you will be monitored for a variety of different skills. These skills include being able to stop and start on flat ground and hills, turning, backing up, maintaining a proper distance between vehicles, signaling, parallel parking and changing lanes. You will also need to demonstrate an understanding of traffic and road signs and that you obey these signs.
Review the Test
After your test you will have a discussion with your test administrator. They will talk with you about how you did. In many cases they will offer advice and correction to help you become a better driver. They will then let you know if you passed or failed. You can retest if necessary, but will need to wait a period of time and make a new appointment.
Upgrade Your License
If you pass the test you will receive documents that will be used to upgrade your license to a class 5 license. Take these into the Registry of Motor Vehicles and pay a fee of $72.10 for your new license.
Adhere to Restrictions
During the first few months of having a license you will be able to drive alone. However, there are still restrictions placed on your license. Make sure that you always drive with a 0% blood alcohol level and that only 1 passenger rides in the front seat with you. All passengers must have and wear a seatbelt. Also you cannot drive between midnight and 5 a.m. unless you have an experienced driver with you. These restrictions will apply until you complete a special course for new drivers. You can take either the 6 hour defensive driving course or a 25 hour course of drivers training with at least 10 hours behind the wheel. To have the restrictions removed, present your certificate of completion to the Ministry of Transportation.
Avoid Getting Your License Suspended or Receiving Demerits
Once you receive your license, drive carefully. Nova Scotia uses a demerit system to track driver’s mistakes and too many demerits may result in a lost license. Suspensions of your license can really delay the process. Receiving demerits can also result in having to take drivers improvement courses or other forms of corrective action. It is best to follow the rules of the road and to avoid these problems completely.
Andrei Zakhareuski is the founder of Find-a-driving-school.ca. He has been writing for beginner Canadian drivers for several years.
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