Preparing to get your driver’s licence can be a long, stressful experience. But after passing the written test and the G2 road test, intensive driving courses and countless hours practicing behind the wheel, you are finally ready. But before booking your road test, you may be wondering if there is one location that may be easier to pass than the others. Here’s what we’ve uncovered to be the best and worst places to take your drive tests in Ontario.
Ontario’s graduated licensing system requires student drivers to take two major road tests – a G1 road test (to qualify for a G2 licence) and a subsequent G2 road test (to qualify for a full G licence). Both tests are booked through a DriveTest centre throughout Ontario. Many struggle with the notion of staying close to home for convenience, while others look for quicker booking times, even if that means going further away. Let’s examine each option:
1. Close to home
For many, the easiest answer as to where they should book the driving test is in their own backyard. Many feel that heading to a testing centre that is closest to where they live makes the most sense. While that’s definitely the most convenient, it may not always guarantee your success. The rationale behind many taking the test at centres near home is that as a new driver, you’ve had the bulk of your driving practice in your neighbourhood. Taking your driving test on familiar roadways can remove some of the stress you may experience on test day.
2. Locations with earlier bookings
Contrary to popular belief, you are not restricted to locations with closest proximity to your home to take your test. Many new drivers are most interested in getting their licence as soon as possible. Therefore, these drivers choose to venture out beyond the familiarity of their neighbourhoods for the sake of expediency. If you don’t mind the drive, DriveTest centres in Sudbury, Dryden, Winchester, Thunder Bay, Kapuskasing, Bancroft, Belleville, and North Bay, each offer a failure rate lower than 30%. Additionally, some other honourable mentions that may be easier to get to are Orillia, Ottawa, London, and Kitchener. However, your best chance of booking a driving test and passing is up North.
Factors that influence pass and fail rates
There are many factors that can affect the pass/fail rate at a DriveTest centre. Each play a part in your chances of success when it comes to your G2 and G tests:
- Ability to drive your car
- Your preparedness for the test
- Your skill level
- Road conditions
- Traffic volume
- The complexity of the test route
- Strictness of the examiner
- People choosing to do their test at a particular location
Road test failure rates by city in Ontario
Failure rates for DriveTest centres throughout Ontario can be found on a variety of websites. Each of their data summarizes the pass/fail rates for each centre. This information has led many to believe that you may have a better chance of passing your driving at some locations over others. Each centre has its own set of failure rates, which can act as loose indicators of their difficulty levels (and your chances of passing). Here are a few sites we visited:
1. Drive Test Failure Rate website
When looking for possible centres to avoid based on pass/fail rates, you will do best to steer clear of Brampton, Downsview and Etobicoke for your drive tests in Ontario. These locations report the highest fail rate for the G2 road test, from 51-53%, respectively. They fall within the top four cities with the highest fail rate for G licence tests, ranging from 41-47%.
2. Google Maps
Google Maps have listed the failure rates for every DriveTest Centre in Ontario by city on a map that is categorized into three colours:
- Green = Relatively low failure rates
- Yellow = Relatively average failure rates
- Red = Relatively high failure rates
They also report that Brampton and Etobicoke have the highest fail rates of any other city in Ontario. So, if you are looking to map out a DriveTest centre not too far from home that will give you a better chance of passing, this option may be more your speed.
3. Hi-Tech Driver Education
According to this site, Kenora, Ontario and Sault Ste. Marie have the lowest failure rates when it comes to the G2 road test. Kenora at 7% and SSM at 11%. This means that there is a very low chance to fail if your test is taken at either of these locations. Similarly, your best chance to pass your G licence test in Ontario is in either Espanola or Kapuskasing. Espanola with a fail rate of 7% and Kapuskasing with 9%. Therefore, this means these locations have the highest success rate for passing the G road test.
4. Pass Drive Test
If you are looking for specifics about how you will be scored on your driving test, passdrivetest.net allows you to preview the test routes and gives you a turn-by-turn description of where the examiner will take you. If you are interested in the scoring for the drive tests in Ontario, you can download a copy of the marking sheet and have a friend or family member evaluate you in a simulated driving test.
Tip: For those just beginning their driving journey, this website also has comprehensive practice test questions for those taking their G1 written tests. It’s a great resource to utilize on your driving journey!
It’s important to remember that a driving test is not a comprehensive reflection of your driving abilities. Just because a DriveTest Centre has low fail rates, doesn’t mean that taking a driving test there guarantees a pass. You may be an excellent driver, but can freeze up in testing situations. There are no limits to the number of times you can retake the test, as long as you make sure that your licence doesn’t expire in the meantime.
It is also worth noting that someone that passes their test at the most difficult DriveTest Centre may still turn out to be a hazardous driver. Meanwhile, someone else can pass at the easiest DriveTest Centre and turn out to be a very conscientious one. As long as you’re prepared, you should be able to take your road test at any DriveTest Centre in Ontario with confidence!
For information regarding the Graduated Licensing requirements and tips to improve the success of your drive tests in Ontario, please scroll through our blog articles below for the most up to date information.