Mandatory training for Class A driver’s licence applicants
If you want a Class A (commercial truck) driver’s licence you will need to complete mandatory training before taking your road test.
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About the training
Mandatory entry-level training will include at least 103.5 hours of instruction and cover the entry-level knowledge and skills needed to safely operate a large truck on Ontario’s roads.
Once you’ve completed the training, your driving record will be updated automatically.
If you meet all the other Class A requirements you can take a Class A road test at a DriveTest centre.
The training will be valid for life.
Who must get training
You must complete mandatory entry-level training before taking a road test if you:
- have a restricted Class A (AR) licence and want to upgrade to a full Class A
- had a full Class A licence, but it is invalid (e.g. expired, downgraded, suspended) for three or more years
- have a commercial driver’s licence from another country
- have had a Class 1 commercial licence (Class A equivalent) from a Canadian province other than Ontario for less than 12 months
- if you had it for 12-24 months, you will have the option to complete mandatory entry-level training or the Class A knowledge and road test
You do not have to take the training if you already hold a valid full Class A licence.
Where to take the training
You must be trained by an approved training provider recognized by the province. This includes:
- a registered Private Career College
- If you are a truck training school, to deliver or continue to deliver the Class A mandatory entry-level training program you must register as a Private Career College under the Private Career Colleges Act, 2005.
- learn how to register your organization as a Private Career College or email us any questions
- an organization under the Ministry of Transportation’s Driver Certification Program, which includes approved Ontario Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology
- learn how to register your organization under the Driver Certification Program or email us any questions
Training providers set their own costs. Use the Private Career College search service to find approved providers who deliver mandatory entry-level training and how much they charge.
You may be eligible to get help paying for the training from government programs such as:
- Second Career – funding to cover program costs and living expenses for unemployed and laid-off workers
- Workplace Safety Insurance Board – funding to cover program costs for injured workers
- Ontario Works – funding to cover program costs for recipients of Ontario Works
- Aboriginal Bands – funding to cover program costs for band members
Employers can apply for funding to help pay for employee training through the Canada-Ontario Jobs Grant.
Getting a Restricted Class A licence
You do not have to complete mandatory entry-level training to get a Restricted Class A (AR) licence. If you want to upgrade from an AR to a full Class A licence, you will have to complete the training at that time and take a road test in a full Class A vehicle.
As of July 1, 2022, the type of transmission in the vehicle you use for your road test will determine what types of Class AR vehicles you can drive in Ontario.
Class A manual transmission restriction
As of July 1, 2022, if you complete your Class A or Class A restricted (AR) road test in a vehicle with an automatic transmission, semi-automatic or automated-manual transmissions, you cannot drive class A/AR vehicles with a manual transmission. You can only operate automatic, semi-automatic and automated-manual transmission Class A/AR vehicles. This restriction will be noted on your driver’s record and driver’s licence. It will not apply when operating lower-class vehicles such as class G or D.
A motor vehicle is considered to have a manual transmission if it has a driver-operated clutch that is activated by a pedal or lever and a driver-operated gear-shift mechanism that is operated by hand or foot and does not use the assistance of automation. To drive Class A/AR vehicles with a manual transmission, you must complete your road test in a vehicle with a manual transmission that consists of at least eight forward gears with a high-low range.
This restriction does not apply to anyone who completed their Class A/AR road test before July 1, 2022.