Get a motorcycle licence

woman riding a motorcycleIf you are at least 16 years old, you can apply for a motorcycle licence in Ontario.  If you are a new rider, you will need to practice riding and gain experience over time. Here’s how to get a motorcycle licence.

Driving in Ontario

To ride on Ontario roads, you need to:

  • carry a valid driver’s licence at all times
  • wear an approved helmet
  • have a valid owner’s permit, licence plate and insurance
  • obey traffic laws and drive safely

Motorcycle licence types

To drive a motorcycle, you will need an M Class licence. The type of licence you get will depend on the type of motorcycle you want to drive.  The three main types are:

M (includes M1 and M2): for full-speed motorcycles.

M with condition L (includes M1 and M2-L): for mopeds and motorized scooters (also called “limited-speed” motorcycles).

M with condition M (includes M1 and M2-M): for three-wheeled motorcycles.

All licences come with certain conditions. See Ontario’s full list of licences.

What’s a three-wheeled motorcycle?

How can I tell I have a limited-speed motorcycle?

Apply for a motorcycle licence

To apply for a motorcycle licence in Ontario, you need to:

  • be at least 16 years old
  • pass an eye test
  • pass a written test about the rules of the road and traffic signs

Once you pass these tests, you get an M1 licence. You are considered a beginner rider and need to practice riding and gain experience over time.

Where to apply

To apply and take the required tests, visit a DriveTest centre.

You will need to bring original identification that shows your legal name, date of birth and your signature.

Find a DriveTest centre

Accepted identity documents

Canadian Citizens

  • passport (Canadian or foreign)
  • Canadian Citizenship Card with photo
  • Secure Certificate of Indian Status Card (issued on or after December 15, 2009 by Indian and Northern Affairs Canada)
  • Ontario Photo Card

Permanent Residents

  • Permanent Resident (PR) Card
  • Record of Landing (IMM 1000)
  • Confirmation of Permanent Residence (IMM 5292)
  • Ontario Photo Card

Temporary Residents

  • Study Permit / Student Authorization (IMM 1442)
  • Work Permit / Employment Authorization (IMM 1442)
  • Visitor Record (IMM 1442)
  • Temporary Resident Permit (IMM 1442)
  • Refugee Status Claim (IMM 1434)
  • Acknowledgement of Intent to Claim Refugee Status (IMM 7703) with photo
  • Report Pursuant to the Immigration Act (IMM 1442) with photo
  • Ontario Photo Card

See a full list of accepted documents.

Fees

You will need to pay a fee to apply for a licence and take the written test. See the list of fees.

Study for the written test

Ontario’s Official Motorcycle Handbook will help you prepare for your written knowledge test. It covers rules of the road and practical riding tips. You can buy the handbook:

  • online through ServiceOntario
  • at a DriveTest centre
  • from many retail stores

Cost: $14.95 plus taxes

Preview the Motorcycle Handbook

Buy a copy on-line

Find a ServiceOntario centre or a DriveTest centre

Learn to drive: graduated licensing

After you pass your eye and written tests, you get an M1 licence.  Before you get a full M licence, you have to:

  • finish two learning levels:
    • M1 and M2 (for full-speed motorcycles)
    • M1 and M2-L (for mopeds and motorized scooters)
    • M1 and M2-M (for three-wheeled motorcycles)
  • pass two road tests

Once you get your M2 licence, you have up to five years to finish the learning process. After five years, if you do not get your full licence, you will need to start over.

M1 licence

By law, if you have an M1 licence, you must:

  • maintain a zero blood alcohol level (no alcohol in your blood)
  • ride only during daylight hours (½ hour before sunrise to ½ hour after sunset)
  • wear an approved helmet
  • not drive on roads with speed limits over 80 km/hour — except highways 11, 17, 61, 69, 71, 101, 102, 144 and 655
  • always drive alone - you may not carry passengers

You need to wait at least 60 days before you can take your first road test. Your M1 licence is valid for 90 days. If the licence expires, you will need to start over.

M2 licence

After you pass the M1 road test, you get an M2 licence. You can now ride at night and on any road. You must still wear a helmet and maintain a zero blood alcohol level.

After 22 months, you can take the second road test. If you pass, you get a full M licence.

If you take a recognized Motorcycle Safety Course, you can take the test after just 18 months.

If you have an M2 with condition L licence (M2-L)

If you have an M2 with condition M licence (M2-M)

Motorcycle safety courses

When you successfully complete a motorcycle safety course, you will get a referral envelope.  If you bring this referral envelope to a DriveTest centre, within six months, you do not need to take the M1 road test – you move directly to the next level (M2). You also will be able to take the second road test sooner, after 18 months instead of the standard 22.

See a list of approved motorcycle safety courses

What happens if I fail the M1 or M2 road test?

Booking a road test

To book a road test appointment, you will need to provide:

  • your valid Ontario driver's licence number
  • a preferred location for taking the test
  • a second and third choice of location
  • a preferred date and time

You can book, cancel or reschedule a road test appointment:

  • online
  • by phone at 416-325-8580 or 1-888-570-6110
  • at any DriveTest Centre

You need to cancel a test at least 48 hours ahead of your appointment to avoid a cancellation fee.

Book a road test.

Find a DriveTest Centre

Road Test Fact Sheet & Checklist

More topics: new riders

Penalties for new drivers who break traffic laws

“Escalating” penalties for new drivers 

Penalties for drinking and driving as a new drivers

Updated: February 5, 2014