I've been searching on Google but there doesn't seem to be any results confirming or rejecting the requirement of a driver's license prior to PPL. It returns results for the United States, but that is of no use to me.

There is this question, but it doesn't address the having or not having a driver's license prior to PPL.

I have looked at the flight school (a),(b). Unless I am blind, there is no reference to this matter.

It seems like a very obvious question to ask, I'm surprised there is no reference.

If someone could point me to resources, or if someone obtained their PPL prior to driver's license could provide a briefing of whether this is an obvious requirement and I am oblivious to it or is it not a requirement at all.

  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to Av.SE. $\endgroup$
    – Ralph J
    Mar 26, 2019 at 22:02
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    $\begingroup$ I'm not aware of any country where a DL is a prerequisite for a PPL, which makes sense since few (if any) of the skills transfer. However, it's generally hard to prove a negative; there's unlikely to be a law that says you don't need one, just a lack of laws saying you do need one. $\endgroup$
    – StephenS
    Mar 27, 2019 at 0:09
  • $\begingroup$ @StephenS there are quiet a bit transferable skills, which are required for flight 1. Spatial abilities ( i.e. parallel parking ) 2. Short reaction time to events 3. Ability to monitor multiple displays at once 4. Alertness and awareness of surroundings (i.e. not zoning out) 5. Procedural memory Hence the surprise of why a driver's license is not mentioned $\endgroup$
    – Mel
    Mar 27, 2019 at 6:19
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    $\begingroup$ (1) Fair enough, but remember you're moving in three dimensions, rather than one-and-a-half, and not necessarily in the direction the nose is pointed. (2) I'd argue that with a few exceptions, correct response is far more important in aviation than a quick response, as long as there isn't an inordinate delay. (3) You shouldn't really monitor all instruments at once, but you should develop good instrument scan technique. (4) Situational awareness should be drilled into you from day one of primary training by any decent instructor. (5) That's what training and rehearsal is for. $\endgroup$
    – user
    Mar 27, 2019 at 10:05
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    $\begingroup$ @Mel none of those items you list are taught in driver's ed (in the USA). At least not my recollection of my driver's ed class, nor when my 3 kids went through it. $\endgroup$
    – FreeMan
    Mar 27, 2019 at 11:27

2 Answers 2


It does not appear that a driver's license is required. From General information on pilot licences and permits, which details the requirements for getting various kinds of pilot licenses, there is no mention of a driver's license.

Prior to the issue of a permit or licence, an application must be submitted and the following requirements met:

  • proof of age and citizenship (not required if previously submitted)
  • proof of medical fitness;
  • proof of having met the knowledge requirements;
  • proof of having met the skill requirement;
  • proof of having met the experience requirement;
  • payment of the appropriate fees.

CAR 421.06 lists the documents that are accepted as proof of citizenship and proof of identification when you apply for a Canadian pilot's license. A driver's license isn't listed so I assume it isn't even accepted for those purposes, never mind required.

CAR 401.03 lists the documents that you have to have on you when flying, and there are only two: your license and your medical.

So it appears that a driver's license isn't required to either get or use a PPL.


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