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Licence Requirements for Renting a Car in Canada

licence requirements

When you rent a car in Canada, you need to make sure that you meet the correct driver's licence requirements - to ensure you are able to pick up your rental successfully.

Even if you do have a driver's licence, it may not be accepted by certain suppliers due to the length of time you have held your licence, your age, the type of licence it is, its validity and the language it is in.

What type of driver's licence will I need?

  • You will require a driver's licence that is valid at the time of rental and until the rental period is over.
  • Your driver's licence must be in the correct name of the driver.
  • If you are a non-U.S. or non-Canadian resident, you may also need to provide your passport when you collect your rental.
  • Some car rental companies will require you to have held your licence for 2 years. Check with the specific supplier you have booked with and check their terms and conditions here. By doing this, you will be able to see specifically what is required to ensure your licence will be accepted by the car rental company.
  • Is your licence in a language other than English? Car rental companies may not accept your licence unless it is presented in conjunction with an International Driver's Permit.

What isn't accepted?

  • Photocopies of your licence.
  • Learner's Permits, Provisional or Restricted licences are usually not accepted.

For in-depth licence requirements for each supplier, take a look at our page on Licence Types.

Unsure if you'll need an International Driving Permit? Take a look at our article to see if this is something you will require.

Are you still unsure if your licence will be accepted by the car rental company? You can contact our customer care experts to help you.

Important:
Don't book your car rental until you are sure your licence will be accepted. It is recommended that you check the suppliers terms and conditions and ensure that your licence can be used before you book with a specific supplier or show up to collect your car.
Will you need a international permit? Do you have a open licence? Is it valid? Check all these things to be prepared for your car rental experience.
Not only will your licence need to be valid, there are certain age restrictions that may mean you can't rent a car with certain suppliers. If you are aged between 21-24 double check that you are able to rent a car. Additionally, if you are under 25, you may need to pay a young driver surcharge.

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