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Frequently Asked Questions

Winter driving with Wendys Driving School

Here are some answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about us, the process of obtaining your learner's permit, driving lessons, taking your SAAQ Road Test and obtaining your Québec Driver's Licence.

Click the question to go down to the answer:

1. Are all of your cars smoke free?

YES! All of our cars are, and always have been, smoke free.

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2. What is the new law for mandatory driving lessons about?

Under the new system (for anyone obtaining a learners permit after January 17, 2010), you are required to complete 24 hours of classroom theory and 15 hours in-car. It will take a minimum of 13 months to obtain your Québec Class 5 driver's licence. This will enable you to practice driving in various weather and road conditions throughout the year.

Here's how the new graduated licensing system works: You will be required to take 10 hours of classroom theory. At the tenth hour, you will have an exam with the driving school. Once you pass this exam, you will recieve a certificate to take to the SAAQ to obtain your learners permit. Over the next 10 months, you will be required to complete 14 more hours of theory and 12 hours in-car. After 10 months, you are then able to make an appointment at the SAAQ to do a written test. Once you pass the written test, you must wait an additional two months before you can book your road test. During those two months, you will have another 3 hours in-car. This makes a total of 24 hours of classroom theory and 15 hours in-car.

For more detailed information, please vist the SAAQ web page on the new Mandatory Driving Course. Or, see the description of the Road Safety Education Program for a New Generation of Drivers on the Courses page of this website.

Download the SAAQ Accompanying Rider's Guide. (right click on the link and save to your computer). This is a 31 page guide offered FREE from the SAAQ. It's for the person - usually a parent, spouse or other family member - who is going to serve as accompanying rider during a learner's practice sessions.

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3. Do I have to wait until I am 16 years old to start taking the course?

No, however you must be at least 16 before (or the day of) Session 5 when you take the learner's licence test.

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4. How can I schedule, change or cancel an in-car practical driving lesson?

You can call us during our normal business hours. For our Kirkland office, call 514-694-4030. For our Île-Perrot office, call 514-453-5437. For our Pointe-Claire office, call 514-697-2886. Or, you can schedule a new in-car driving lesson, or change an existing one at any time online by visting our In-Car Booking web page.

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5. How do I schedule my test at an S.A.A.Q. outlet?

You must schedule your test by calling the S.A.A.Q. (Société de l'Assurance Automobile du Québec) at 514-873-7620. Or, you can schedule your test online Click here to go directly to the SAAQclic Online Services (be sure to print out your confirmation).

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6. What will I be tested on when I go for the second knowledge test at the SAAQ?

You will be tested on the information provided to you from the Éducation Routière website (educationroutiere.saaq.gouv.qc.ca) and the theory classes taken at the driving school.

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7. What documents will I need to bring for my theory test?

On the day you go for your S.A.A.Q. theory, or knowledge test, you must show your Medicare card. It is mandatory to show it as proof of residency. You also need to show another piece of identification such as a Canadian birth certificate (new style Québec birth certificate if born in Québec). If you're under 18, you'll need a consent form signed by a parent or legal guardian (see below). Your learners permit is good for 18 months and can be renewed for another 18 months at any SAAQ Full Service Centre. Anyone not born in Canada must open a file at the SAAQ Henri-Bourassa location in Montréal. They will advise you of what documentation to bring. Call them at 1-888-356-6616.

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8. How do I get a parental consent form if I'm under 18?

You will need this parental consent form, available in PDF. You can fill in the form on your screen and then print it. If you need a PDF reader, you can download one for free from Adobe. Otherwise, you can visit an S.A.A.Q. outlet in person to get one to bring home with you, or have one of your parents or a legal guardian accompany you on the day of your test.

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9. How do I get a new style Québec Birth Certificate?

Québec birth certificates issued prior to January 1, 1994 are NOT acceptable. If you require an official new-style government issued Québec birth certificate, you must request one from the Directeur de l'État Civil.

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10. How much does a theory test cost?

Under the new driving laws, you must pass two theory tests. The first one is given at the driving school and the test fee is included in the cost of the course. Upon successfully passing this theory test, you will receive an attestation to take to the SAAQ. The Société will issue you a learner's permit for $61.80. As with all fees the SAAQ charges, subject to change without notice. The second theory test is taken at the SAAQ a minimum of 10 months later and cost $10.40 payable by cash, cheques or Interac but not credit cards.

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11. What if I fail my theory test?

You must receive an overall mark of 75% or more to pass. If you are unsuccessful, you must redo the test after a delay of one to seven days depending on the driving school's availability. The second theory test is taken at the SAAQ after holding a learner's permit for at least 10 months and completing all 12 theory classes. It consists of 64 questions and requires a passing grade of 75% or more. If you are unsuccessful, you must wait a minimum of 28 days before you can schedule another test.

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12. What am I permitted to do with my Learner's Permit?

Once you obtain your learner's permit, you can practice driving only in the province of Québec and only if accompanied by a person who has held a Class 5 licence for at least two years or more (beyond the probationary driving period) and is able to provide assistance and advice. A learners permit is good for 18 months, renewable for another 18 months(SAAQ fees apply).

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13. Can I drive outside of Québec with my Québec Learner's Permit?

No. Your Québec learner's permit is only meant for practice driving in Québec with a licensed accompanying driver present at all times. The Québec Learner's Permit is a novice license and is not considered to be fully licensed for driving. Also, learners permits from other provinces and states are not valid in Québec.

 

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14. What is the allowable blood alcohol limit?

ZERO! (Until the age of 21, as of April 15, 2012). Holders of a learner's licence and probationary licence are prohibited from driving after consuming alcohol. The following penalties apply to individuals who violate the zero alcohol rule:

  • Their licence is suspended immediately for a period of 90 days;
  • FOUR demerit points are entered on their driving record, which results in an additional 3-month suspension;
  • A driver is liable to a $438 to $865 fine. This amount, subject to change, includes fines provided under the Highway Safety Code, registry fees and a contribution to IVAC; (Indemnisation des victimes d'actes criminels); other fees may apply.

Note: if the blood-alcohol level of a driver who is subject to the “zero alcohol” rule is above 80 mg/100 ml, the driver can be charged under the Criminal Code and if convicted, he or she will be subject to the stiffer measures and penalties.

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15. What kinds of vehicles can I drive?

With your Class 5 learner's permit, you can only drive Class 5 vehicles (most private passenger cars and vans).

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16. How do I schedule my road test and how can I rent a car for it?

If you wish to rent one of our cars for your road test, simply call our office: 514-694-4030 (Kirkland), 514-453-5437 (Île-Perrot) or 514-697-2886 (Pointe-Claire). We can provide transportation to the S.A.A.Q. testing centre in Dorval, QC from our Kirkland, Île-Perrot or Pointe Claire office for a fee or simply meet you there for the car rental only (refer to the courses page). If you have other arrangements for a car to use, simply call the S.A.A.Q. directly at 514-873-7620.

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17. How much does the SAAQ road test cost?

You'll pay a fee of $26 when you go for your behind-the-wheel driving test. You will receive your Probationary Licence once you pass. This will cost you a MAXIMUM of $184.55 payable by cash, cheque or debit card (As with all SAAQ fees, subject to change without notice). The SAAQ does NOT accept any credit cards. If you fail, you must wait 28 days before attempting your road test again, and pay an additional $26 retesting fee.

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18. What else do I have to bring to my SAAQ road test?

On the day of your road test, you must bring :

  • Money to pay the fees as outlined above.
  • Your SAAQ Photo Identification card;
  • Your blue (Apprenti-Conducter) learner's licence or a new one-piece learners permit  (which replaces the blue paper learner's permit and the separate photo ID card);
  • Your Attestation d'un Cours de Conduite (certificate), which is the confirmation of completion of your driving school course;
  • If you are under 18 years old, you will need a new Parental Permission Slip (Click that link to download a PDF version).

If you are supplying your own car for the road test, you must bring the registration and insurance (make sure you are on the insurance policy of that vehicle). There must not be any outstanding fines linked to the car. Also make sure that all lights, the horn and parking brake are in proper working order. The windshield must not have any cracks. Make sure that the tires have adequate tread.  The new Québec Winter Tire Law stipulates that all passenger vehicles and taxis registered and/or rented in Québec must be equipped with winter tires between December 15 and March 15. The SAAQ may not allow to use your car if it does not meet these requirements.

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19. Does my name need to appear on the insurance certificate ?

No, but you MUST contact your insurance company ahead of time to have them add you to the insurance policy of the vehicle you will be bringing to the road test. You should actually do this as soon as you get your learner's permit so that you are covered right away and are able to practice driving in between your lessons with us.

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20. How long do I have to wait before I can take my road test?

If you obtained a Québec Learner's Permit prior to January 17, 2010 and you don't have to take a recognized driver training course. If you did NOT obtain a Québec Learner's Permit prior to January 17, 2010 then you must follow the new manadatory driving course.

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21. What is a Probationary Driver's Licence?

Effective immediately, regardless of age, when you pass your Class 5 Road Test, the Société will issue you a plasticized photo licence with the words "CONDUCTEUR PROBATOIRE" at the top. It will be valid for one year and costs $98.90. You will have full driving privileges, however it is tied to a more stringent penalty system with regards to demerit points and alcohol use. After this time, a regular class 5 Driver's Licence will be issued to you, renewable every year on your birthday providing you have not received any demerit points. Here are the maximum allowable number of demerit points before your licence will be suspended:

 

Learner's Permit: 4 Points
Probationary Licence: 4 Points
Up to age 22: 8 Points (as of June 19, 2011)
23 to 24 Years Old: 12 Points
After age 25, or after you have held a Learner's Permit for more than two years: 15 Points

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22. How Many Hours do I need to Drive? And what if I need more lessons?

As stated in the SAAQ Accompanying Rider's Guide (PDF), "It is recommended to get at least 50 hours of driving time under the supervision of an accompanying rider. From another point of view, it is generally recognized that, in order to become proficient at handling all driving situations, a new driver needs to cover a total of 3,000 to 6,000 kilometres. But there are no strict rules in this regard. The more trips a learner driver makes and the more varied they are, the better prepared he or she will be to drive safely as an independent driver."

In the event that you are in need of more driving practice, and are unable to do so outside of your driving lessons with us, extra lessons can be purchased for an additional fee.

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23. How can I get more information?

You can get more detailed information by visiting the official S.A.A.Q. website. Or call them at 514-873-7620.

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Driving lesson in the rain in Pincourt in a Toyota Prius