February 24, 2024

As the year comes to a close, some students are struggling with the possibility that they may not receive their full G driver’s licence before it expires.

In March 2020, Drive Test centres closed for more than three months, reopening at the end of June, because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The centres also had to cancel thousands of road tests, pushing them back nearly a year. In the summer of 2020, the government issued a report stating that all licences, regardless of their expiry date, have been extended indefinitely.

“It’s been very frustrating and terrible,” said Gregory Marsden, a recent graduate of Conestoga College’s business marketing program. “My experience has been unsatisfactory and stressful.” He also said his test to complete his full G licence has been rescheduled three times.

But that all ends in 2022.

The new year marks the last and final year where residents’ driver’s licences of any class are extended. To accommodate for the thousands of students and residents waiting for their tests, the government opened temporary locations where residents are able to complete their tests at a much faster pace, decreasing the wait time for new students to book a test. These locations opened on Aug. 9, 2020, and are expected to continue until Nov. 2021.

These locations have been spread all around Ontario including:

  • Guelph
  • Oshawa
  • Toronto
  • Hamilton/Niagara
  • Mississauga/Brampton
  • York/Durham
Map of temporary road test locations. (Fayth Paul/Spoke Online)

“It’s hard because of the COVID-19 regulations,” said Jubin Thomas, a recent graduate of Conestoga College’s marketing communications program. Thomas’ test has also been rescheduled twice.

Regardless of these temporary road test centres, students still feel the pressure of completing their licences on time while also competing with the schedules of their daily lives. Drive Test centres have also closed their website on multiple occasions without notice, which is another issue that students have to face when booking their road test.

As test centres continue to make up for nearly two years of missed time, lineups continue to take over the parking lot sidewalks, creating a longer wait time for those who are not completing their road test.

Road tests and licence expiry dates are scheduled to return to a normal schedule on Jan. 1, 2023.

For more information, go to the government of Ontario website.

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