Expanding driver training

Highway Safety is introducing a newcomer novice driver course this September.

“Driving is a complex activity anywhere, and it gets even more complex with our winter weather in PEI,” said Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy Minister Steven Myers. “The newcomer novice driver course will be geared to some of the specific issues we face in PEI like winter driving, graduated driver licencing and school bus safety.”

Newcomers are required to get a PEI licence shortly after becoming a resident of our province and the new driver education course will be required before the road test. The course will take five hours and be taught in one or two sessions. There will be a registration fee. 

There are a few exemptions. Visitors to the Island are not required to exchange their driver’s licence. Newcomers who have taken an approved PEI driver’s education course are not required to take our course. Newcomers that have a licence from a country with a driver’s licence reciprocity agreement with PEI – such as the UK or Japan – are also exempt. 

“When we form a licence reciprocity agreement with a country, it is because we know the driver training programs in that country and we can easily verify the driver’s history. By providing training to drivers from non-reciprocity countries, we are assured that the driver knows all our rules,” added Highway Safety Director Graham Miner. “In our experience, new-to-PEI drivers appreciate when we take the time to make sure they and their families are driving safe.”

Starting in September, newcomers interested in exchanging their licence can contact their nearest Access PEI for information on the course and to register. 

Media contact:
Katie MacDonald
Department of Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy


Newcomers Novice Driver`s Course 
Starting in September 2019, the Province will introduce a Newcomers Novice Driver Course (NNDC) for all drivers exchanging a driver`s license from a non-reciprocity country. 

This is an educational program for all newcomers unless the driver has completed an approved PEI driver education program or is exchanging a driver`s license from countries Prince Edward Island has a formal exchange reciprocity agreement. PEI currently has formal reciprocity agreements with Austria, Australia, France, Germany, Japan, South Korea, Switzerland, Taiwan, the United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales including Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man) and the United States. 

This course must be completed before taking the first road test and is in addition to the rules of the road knowledge exams that are already in place. The NNDC is approximately five hours and depending on location is taught in one or two sessions. Registration and a fee is required before taking the course.
In the near future, to inquire about times, a course location, and to register, newcomers will be able to call or visit the nearest Access PEI location.  

Driving with an Out-of-Province License
It is important to note under the Highway Traffic Act, newcomers may use their driver`s license to drive in Prince Edward Island for up to four months after they become a resident of the Province. An International Driver’s Permit is required if the driver`s license is not in English or French. This period of time can be extended if an individual has not completed the driver license exchange process within the four months.

Drivers with a six month Visitor`s Visa are not required or eligible for exchanging their driver`s licenses. These drivers may drive for the duration of their Visitor`s Visa.

A non-resident employed in the PEI agricultural or fishing industry under the Government of Canada Guest Worker Program and hold a valid foreign driver’s license equal to a PEI Class 5 and an International Driver’s Permit, may operate a vehicle that requires a Class 5 driver’s license in this province for up to eight months in any one year without being required to do a driver`s license exchange.

Individuals attending university or college full-time may drive in PEI with their license as long as it is valid and, if required, accompanied by an International Driver's Permit.

General Inquiries

Access PEI
33 Riverside Drive,
Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8
Phone: 902-368-5200
Fax: 902-569-7560
Road-Related Inquiries: roads@gov.pe.ca 
All other TI inquiries: DeptTIE@gov.pe.ca 
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