Toronto, Ontario – Ontario drivers can now apply for the Ontario Enhanced Driver’s License (EDL), which can be used at U.S. land and border crossings as an alternative to a passport. The licenses are optional, and drivers must be Canadian citizens to apply.

Nine ServiceOntario centres are now accepting applications for EDL, which costs an additional $40. Appointments will be available starting May 19, with the first batch of licenses scheduled for delivery by June 1, 2009. To book an appointment, visit ServiceOntario.

As of June 1, 2009, the U.S. requires Canadian citizens entering the country by land or water must present a valid passport or approved secure document that establishes the bearer’s identity and citizenship, including the EDL. A valid passport is still required to enter the U.S. by air.

Appointments will be available at nine ServiceOntario locations in Thunder Bay, Saulte Ste. Marie, Windsor, St. Catharines, Toronto Downtown, North York, Kingston, Cornwall and Ottawa.

The EDL contains the same information as a regular Ontario driver’s license, but also includes a machine-readable Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) chip that denotes Canadian citizenship. The card looks similar to a regular license, but has the word “enhanced” in the title, and CAN in the corner.

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