Some people love driving and cars and some people don't. For others, cars and driving are lifelong passions. However, what is and is not allowed on the road can differ a lot depending on where you go. People might even drive on the opposite side of the road entirely! And if you aren't ready for it and don't know ahead of time what to expect, it could lead to some very big problems. The UK, and many other countries which were previously British colonies, still drive on the left-hand side of the road to this day.
In other countries, however, road rules are more like formalities and no one actually follows them. This can make getting from point A to B quite a shocking adventure if you are not prepared for it. This is even truer if you drive yourself.
Are the Canadian rules of the road so different from the ones in the United States of America? How well do you know the ins and outs of Canadian road rules? Could you get from Montreal to Toronto to Vancouver on the road in one piece? See if you are a true master of the Canadian rules of the road with this rough-riding quiz!
In Canada, they drive on the right side of the road, like in the United States of America. Most of the world drives on the right except for the UK, former UK colonies and a few other countries.
While road rules will not be totally different from province to province, there are some differences to look out for. Canada has 10 provinces and 3 territories, so it is important to research different road rules before you drive there.
If you have an emergency on the road in Canada you can reach help by dialing 911. Through that number, you can reach emergency services such as the police, firefighters and ambulances.
Many Canadian car rental companies won't rent to someone under 21. Some will, but there is an extra fee. Some companies even have maximum age limits or fees for senior renters.
In many of Canada's urban areas, the speed limit is 50 km/h, or about 31 mph. However, you should always follow signs and never assume this. Rules often vary between provinces and cities.
In Canada, children who weigh 9kg or less have to be in a rear-facing car seat in the car. 9kg is about 19.8 lbs. There are different rules for children of different weights in Canada.
It is important to always proceed with caution on the road. Making fast or reckless decisions can have deadly consequences. In this situation, wait for approaching vehicles to pass before entering.
In Canada, drivers must always give way to pedestrians on pedestrian crossings. They must always do this to avoid harmful accidents and potentially deadly collisions with pedestrians.
According to Canadian law, all occupants of a vehicle must wear seat belts. This is a general safety rule in many countries, even though it is not always followed in many places around the world.
It against the rules in Canada to be on your mobile phone while you drive. You are not supposed to talk or text while you drive. However, if it is a hands-free system, it's OK to do this.
Radar detectors allow drivers to avoid getting caught for traffic violations at speed traps and other such places. These are illegal in some parts of the US and throughout Canada.
Just like in the US, you don't want to be caught driving in Canada without documentation and a license. This can lead to big problems if you get pulled over or into an accident in Canada.
Children over 36 kg in weight do not need to use booster seats or car seats in Canada. That's about 79.4 pounds. Other height and age requirements also apply in the country for the safety of children.
Outside of built-up cities and towns, many of Canada's roads have a speed limit between 60-80 km/h. That's roughly 37-50 mph. Always keep an eye out for road signs to know for sure.
On some of Canada's highways, the uppermost speed limit is 100 km/h, or about 62 mph. Most highways have a speed limit somewhere between 80-120 km/h. Top legal speeds tend to be lower in Canada than the US.
What is called DUI (Driving Under The Influence) in the US is called DWI (Driving While Impaired) in Canada. If caught, drivers face heavy penalties for DWI involving any substances in Canada.
If you have a US license, it is valid in most of Canada, but may only be valid for a certain amount of time depending on the province. Whether your license is valid or not, how long it is valid and what paperwork you need depends on your country of origin and where you are visiting in Canada.
Quebec is an eastern Canadian province that is very proud and protective of its French heritage. In this province, many of the road signs are only in French. Some will be in both English and French.
Montreal is the largest city in the French-speaking Canadian province of Quebec. In Montreal and Quebec City, you cannot turn right on red. These are the only places in Canada where this rule applies.
Many Canadian provinces have banned smoking in cars where minors are present. These include British Columbia, Newfoundland and Labrador, Manitoba, Ontario, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan and Yukon Territory.
Canadian winters are far harsher than those in many other places and cause many accidents every year. It is recommended that anyone driving in the Canadian winter have an extreme cold weather emergency kit in their car.
There are very few tolls in Canada. Most of them can be found on bridges that cross over to the United States of America. The 407 Electronic Toll Road in Ontario has automatic tolls, which you get billed for later.
In Canada, you generally have to be 17 years old to drive independently. This varies in different provinces though. For example, in Ontario, you can do this at only 16 years old.
In Canada, all people riding motorcycles have to wear helmets. This is generally the law across all of the provinces and territories of the country. It is for the safety of drivers.
While Canada does have the longest national highway in the world, the country also has vast wilderness. Many of its rural backroads highways are just gravel or dirt, which means you need a 4WD vehicle to drive on them for long periods of time.
Wearing seat belts is mandatory for both drivers and passengers in vehicles in Canada. A fine of up to $500 CAD can result if you do not follow this rule. That is about $380 USD.
Canada is a vast and very cold country with notoriously harsh and dangerous winters. In certain provinces, snow tires are a requirement for all drivers. This is to increase road safety during long and freezing winters.
In some parts of Canada, like Quebec, Ontario and Manitoba, it is illegal to even have an unused radar detector in your vehicle. Police can confiscate them and fine you heavily for having one.
In some countries, you can bribe police officers or other officials or pay fines to them directly. In Canada, trying to bribe police officers is a serious crime and you cannot pay fines to them directly.
In Canada, the rules of the road can vary slightly from province to province. Depending on the province, you will need to have your headlights on, even in the daytime. Be sure to check before you drive.
Look out for signs that alert drivers to animals such as elk, moose and deer in the area. These animals get mesmerized by headlights and freeze up, causing crashes. Car collisions involving moose are known to be especially dangerous.
In Ontario, people who are staying for less than 3 months can use driver's licenses from their country legally. However, anyone staying and driving for longer will need an international Drivers Permit from their country.
In Canada, children between 9-18kg must use a forward-facing car seat. That is between about 19.8-39.7lbs. After this, children of certain weights below 9 years old must use a booster seat.
In Canada, it is never legal to lend your license to someone else. You can lend your car to other licensed drivers at your discretion, but never lend anyone your license for any reason.
There is no exact legal number of the amount of feet you have to be able to stop within in Canada. However, to maintain overall road safety, you need to drive at a speed at which you can safely stop.