Ontario starts you off with an M1 licence. You must be 16 years old to apply for an M1 licence, you must pass an eye test, and you must pass a written test on traffic signs and the rules of the road.
You must hold your M1 licence for at least 60 days before advancing to an M2 licence, though you can take the road test needed for this at any time during this period; the M1 licence expires after 90 days. While you hold your M1 licence, you must have a 0% blood alcohol level while riding, you cannot carry passengers, you cannot ride on a highway with a speed limit over 80 km/h — with some exceptions, noted here. You also may not carry passengers.
After passing your riding test and earning your M2 licence, you may ride at night, and on any highway; however, you must still maintain a 0% blood alcohol level while riding. After 22 months (18 if you’ve completed a recognized training course) you may then take a second road test to get your unrestricted M licence.
Enrolling in a motorcycle safety course can speed things up. As per Ontario’s website: “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.”
Also remember: There are three different M licences available. There’s the M licence, which covers all motorcycles, the M-L for mopeds and scooters, and the M-M, for three-wheeled motorcycles. Each class of the M licence follows a similar progression to gain a full licence.
For full details of the Ontario graduated licencing program, click here.