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Old 12-29-2013, 01:00 AM   #1
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Canadian class 5 sufficient in the US?

Hello all my Canadian friends. I'm a new owner of a 39' fleetwood discovery and wondering if I need to upgrade my Canadian license to travel in the US? It doesn't appear to be the case in Canada, but I thought I'd check. Any advice appreciated! Save me from scouring state websites...

Thanks!
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Old 12-29-2013, 02:22 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by chudson View Post
Hello all my Canadian friends. I'm a new owner of a 39' fleetwood discovery and wondering if I need to upgrade my Canadian license to travel in the US? It doesn't appear to be the case in Canada, but I thought I'd check. Any advice appreciated! Save me from scouring state websites...

Thanks!
Going out on a limb here but I believe if you comply in your home province, you are good to go. If you have air brakes you need to upgrade to comply with an air brake endorsement on both sides of the border.
Best way would be to check with your local CAA for the REAL Version.
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Old 12-29-2013, 05:37 AM   #3
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Since drivers licenses are Provincial responsibilities. Each has its own rules and license classes just like each state has. If you are good to go in your own province, then you are good to go anywhere. There are generally two factors that determine if you need a different license to drive an RV. Neither has anything to do with the vehicle being an RV. These are weight and air brakes.

I believe Ontario limits the vehicle to 11000kg on a normal DL, or towing anything >4600kg and if you have air brakes an air endorsement is required. Over 11000kg needs at least a D license.

Hope this helps. Again if you are good to go in your own Province, you are good anywhere.
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Old 12-29-2013, 06:20 AM   #4
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Hello Chudson and welcome.
If you have airbrakes you require a DZ license that's in Ontario. That is considered a commercial license as long as you stay within the weight limit of that license which will be more than you ever require for a motorhome. It also allows you to drive anywhere in Canada and the US. Cheers Gerald
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Old 01-01-2014, 06:53 PM   #5
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As others have mentioned, drivers licenses work with reciprocity with home province / state so if you are legal in your home province, you're legal everywhere else in North America.

You mentioned class 5 so I'm guessing that you are in Quebec. In Quebec, it appears that motor homes are included under class 5 (Classes of Driver's Licence | Driver's Licence | SAAQ) so you should be ok but I'd call SAAQ to make absolutely sure. (under registration, it appears that any vehicle over 4500kg needs to be registered as a heavy truck and it's possible that to drive a heavy truck, you need a heavy truck license (i.e. class 3 with F endorsement for the air brakes).
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Old 01-02-2014, 01:53 PM   #6
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Might be a silly question, but do you need commercial license for Air Brake to drive a MH? I have a CDL for 28 Pax Bus and thought I was good to go to drive the MH here in the states. A follow on question would be , if I drive to Canada, do I need a license from Canada? thanks I am new to the RV world as this is my first MH
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Old 01-02-2014, 02:00 PM   #7
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In BC I was required to have an air endorsement on my class 5. Had to take the course and pass it before I could get insurance. Our first coach was a new 08 Discovery 39S. Looks like you live in AB so not sure of their rules.
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Old 01-02-2014, 08:30 PM   #8
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Might be a silly question, but do you need commercial license for Air Brake to drive a MH? I have a CDL for 28 Pax Bus and thought I was good to go to drive the MH here in the states. A follow on question would be , if I drive to Canada, do I need a license from Canada? thanks I am new to the RV world as this is my first MH
You just need to be legal in your home State. If you are, then your license is valid in other States / Provinces.
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Old 01-03-2014, 08:38 AM   #9
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One minor change to the prior post by Michelb.. He said: You just need to be legal in your home state.

Should be "State or Province".

Far as I know all US states honor Canadian licenses same as if you were 100 yards from your Sticks & Bricks. (or 100 meters if you like).

My knowledge is specific to Michigan, but I am told this is the rule nation wide.. Also, I think this happened within the last 20 years. but MANY Canadian provinces US police agencies can now run your license for status, so if you are Suspended, Revoked or Denied.. We will know it. This is part of why I know we honor them. I had to be trained on how to read Canadian status replies. (not that hard to do but training is company policy don't you know,, and a good one it is).
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Old 01-03-2014, 08:40 AM   #10
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One minor change to the prior post by Michelb.. He said: You just need to be legal in your home state.

Should be "State or Province".

Far as I know all US states honor Canadian licenses same as if you were 100 yards from your Sticks & Bricks. (or 100 meters if you like).

My knowledge is specific to Michigan, but I am told this is the rule nation wide.. Also, I think this happened within the last 20 years. but MANY Canadian provinces US police agencies can now run your license for status, so if you are Suspended, Revoked or Denied.. We will know it. This is part of why I know we honor them. I had to be trained on how to read Canadian status replies. (not that hard to do but training is company policy don't you know,, and a good one it is).
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Old 01-03-2014, 08:54 AM   #11
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You just need to be legal in your home State. If you are, then your license is valid in other States / Provinces.
X2

FWIW - In Michigan for non commercial RVs, there is NOT an additional air brake requirement to a Conventional Michigan operators license.
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Old 01-03-2014, 01:53 PM   #12
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You are not good to go unless you have an airbrake endorsement. Required for residents of every Canadian Province. Even Alberta!
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Old 01-04-2014, 08:51 AM   #13
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You are not good to go unless you have an airbrake endorsement. Required for residents of every Canadian Province. Even Alberta!
Studying now in fact! Thanks.
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Old 01-05-2014, 02:55 PM   #14
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In general, and this is true across the U.S., you only need a license valid in your home jurisdiction that allows you to drive that vehicle.

In Alberta it is a "Q" endorsement to drive air brakes, no need to get a commercial license.
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