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Time zones in Canada
Standard DST Time zone
UTC−03:30 UTC−02:30 Newfoundland
UTC−04:00 UTC−03:00 Atlantic
UTC−04:00 (year round) Atlantic
UTC−05:00 UTC−04:00 Eastern
UTC−05:00 (year round) Eastern
UTC−06:00 UTC−05:00 Central
UTC−06:00 (year round) Central
UTC−07:00 UTC−06:00 Mountain
UTC−07:00 (year round) Mountain
UTC−08:00 UTC−07:00 Pacific

Canada is divided into six time zones, based on proposals by Scottish Canadian railway engineer Sir Sandford Fleming, who pioneered the use of the 24-hour clock, the world's time zone system, and a standard prime meridian.[1] Most of Canada operates on standard time from the first Sunday in November to the second Sunday in March and daylight saving time the rest of the year.[2]


Official timeEdit

National Research Council laboratories in Ottawa

The National Research Council (NRC) maintains Canada's official time through the use of atomic clocks.[3] The NRC makes time servers available for direct synchronization with computers. The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation has aired a daily time signal, the National Research Council Time Signal, since November 5, 1939.[4]

Time notationEdit

Canadian National timetable from 1975 using the 24-hour clock

The Government of Canada recommends use of the 24-hour clock (e.g. 18:32), which is widely used in contexts such as transportation schedules, parking meters, and data transmission.[5] Speakers of Canadian French have fully adopted this system, but many users of Canadian English use the 12-hour clock in everyday speech (e.g. 6:32 p.m.), even when reading from a 24-hour display, similar to the use of the 24-hour clock in the United Kingdom.


Pacific Time ZoneEdit

Mountain Time ZoneEdit

Central Time ZoneEdit

Eastern Time ZoneEdit

Atlantic Time ZoneEdit

Newfoundland Time ZoneEdit

Former time zonesEdit

  • The Yukon Time Zone (UTC−09:00) covered Yukon until 1975. In 1983, the zone (then covering only a small portion of Alaska) was restructured to cover most of Alaska and renamed the Alaska Time Zone.
  • In 1988, Newfoundland used "double daylight saving time" from April 3 until October 30, meaning that the time was set ahead by 2 hours. All of Newfoundland and southern Labrador, which uses UTC−03:30 as its standard time zone, used UTC−01:30. This only happened in 1988 and the province now only adjusts its time by one hour for daylight saving time.

Daylight saving timeEdit

Four Canadian cities, by local ordinance, used Daylight Saving Time in 1916. Brandon, Manitoba on April 17 became the first place in the world to use it. It was followed by Winnipeg on April 23, Halifax on April 30, and Hamilton, Ontario on June 4.[8]

Daylight saving time is currently observed in all ten provinces and three territories but with several exceptions in several provinces and Nunavut, including most of Saskatchewan, which despite geographically being in the Mountain Time Zone observes year-round CST. Under the Constitution of Canada, laws related to timekeeping are a purely provincial matter. In practice, since the late 1960s DST across Canada has been closely or completely synchronized with its observance in the United States to promote consistent economic and social interaction. When the United States extended DST in 1987 to the first Sunday in April, all DST-observing Canadian provinces followed suit to mimic the change.

The latest United States change (Energy Policy Act of 2005), adding parts of March and November starting in 2007, was adopted by the various provinces and territories on the following dates:

  • Ontario,[9] Manitoba[10] – October 20, 2005
  • Quebec – December 5, 2005[11]
  • Prince Edward Island – December 6, 2005[12]
  • New Brunswick – December 23, 2005[13]
  • Alberta – February 2, 2006[14]
  • Northwest Territories – March 4, 2006[15]
  • British Columbia – March 31, 2006[16]
  • Nova Scotia – April 25, 2006[17]
  • Yukon – July 14, 2006[18]
  • Newfoundland and Labrador – November 20, 2006, but officially announced on January 18, 2007[19]
  • Nunavut – February 19, 2007[20]
  • Saskatchewan – no official action taken, as almost all of the province does not change their clocks to summer time (they remain on CST all year round). However, the few places in the province that do observe daylight saving (Lloydminster and the surrounding area, which straddles the Alberta border and observes Alberta's Mountain Time and Creighton, which observes daylight saving on an unofficial basis due to its proximity to the border with Manitoba) follow the aforementioned March–November schedule just like the rest of the country.

IANA time zone databaseEdit

Data for Canada from of the IANA time zone database. Columns marked with * are the columns from itself.

c.c.* coordinates* TZ* comments* UTC offset UTC offset DST Notes
CA +4734-05243 America/St_Johns Newfoundland Time, including SE Labrador −03:30 −02:30
CA +4439-06336 America/Halifax Atlantic Time - Nova Scotia (most places), PEI −04:00 −03:00
CA +4612-05957 America/Glace_Bay Atlantic Time - Nova Scotia - places that did not observe DST 1966-1971 −04:00 −03:00
CA +4606-06447 America/Moncton Atlantic Time - New Brunswick −04:00 −03:00
CA +5320-06025 America/Goose_Bay Atlantic Time - Labrador - most locations −04:00 −03:00
CA +5125-05707 America/Blanc-Sablon Atlantic Standard Time - Quebec - Lower North Shore −04:00 −04:00
CA +4531-07334 America/Montreal Eastern Time - Quebec - most locations −05:00 −04:00
CA +4339-07923 America/Toronto Eastern Time - Ontario & Quebec - most locations −05:00 −04:00
CA +4901-08816 America/Nipigon Eastern Time - Ontario & Quebec - places that did not observe DST 1967-1973 −05:00 −04:00
CA +4823-08915 America/Thunder_Bay Eastern Time - Thunder Bay, Ontario −05:00 −04:00
CA +6344-06828 America/Iqaluit Eastern Time - east Nunavut - most locations −05:00 −04:00
CA +6608-06544 America/Pangnirtung Eastern Time - Pangnirtung, Nunavut −05:00 −04:00
CA +744144-0944945 America/Resolute Central Time - Resolute, Nunavut −06:00 −05:00
CA +484531-0913718 America/Atikokan Eastern Standard Time - Atikokan, Ontario and Southampton I, Nunavut −05:00 −05:00
CA +624900-0920459 America/Rankin_Inlet Central Time - central Nunavut −06:00 −05:00
CA +4953-09709 America/Winnipeg Central Time - Manitoba & west Ontario −06:00 −05:00
CA +4843-09434 America/Rainy_River Central Time - Rainy River & Fort Frances, Ontario −06:00 −05:00
CA +5024-10439 America/Regina Central Standard Time - Saskatchewan - most locations −06:00 −06:00
CA +5017-10750 America/Swift_Current Central Standard Time - Saskatchewan - midwest −06:00 −06:00
CA +5333-11328 America/Edmonton Mountain Time - Alberta, east British Columbia & west Saskatchewan −07:00 −06:00
CA +690650-1050310 America/Cambridge_Bay Mountain Time - west Nunavut −07:00 −06:00
CA +6227-11421 America/Yellowknife Mountain Time - central Northwest Territories −07:00 −06:00
CA +682059-1334300 America/Inuvik Mountain Time - west Northwest Territories −07:00 −06:00
CA +4906-11631 America/Creston Mountain Standard Time - Creston, British Columbia −07:00 −07:00
CA +5946-12014 America/Dawson_Creek Mountain Standard Time - Dawson Creek & Fort Saint John, British Columbia −07:00 −07:00
CA +4916-12307 America/Vancouver Pacific Time - west British Columbia −08:00 −07:00
CA +6043-13503 America/Whitehorse Pacific Time - south Yukon −08:00 −07:00
CA +6404-13925 America/Dawson Pacific Time - north Yukon −08:00 −07:00

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ A small section at La Biche River Airport in the southeast corner is shown as being on Mountain Standard Time.[2]
  2. ^ Prairie Creek Airport, operated by Canadian Zinc, located in the southwest NT is shown as observing PST/PDT. North of Sixty Fishing Camps (Obre Lake/North of Sixty Airport) and Kasba Lake Lodge (Kasba Lake Airport) are shown as operating on CST/CDT[2]


  1. ^ Creet, Mario (1990). "Sandford Fleming and Universal Time". Scientia Canadensis: Canadian Journal of the History of Science, Technology and Medicine. 14 (1–2): 66–89. doi:10.7202/800302ar.
  2. ^ a b c Canada Flight Supplement. Effective 0901Z 20 June 2019 to 0901Z 15 August 2019.
  3. ^ "NRC time services". National Research Council. Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  4. ^ Bartlett, Geoff (5 November 2014). "'The beginning of the long dash' indicates 75 years of official time on CBC". CBC News. Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  5. ^ Collishaw, Barbara (2002). "FAQs on Writing the Time of Day". Terminology Update. 35 (3): 11.
  6. ^ New Time Zone in Fort Nelson,, September 21, 2015.
  7. ^ a b Legal time in Québec Archived 2011-12-11 at the Wayback Machine, Ministry of Justice of Quebec, April 20, 2015.
  8. ^ Doris Chase Doane, Time Changes in Canada and Mexico, 2nd edition, 1972
  9. ^ Time Act
  10. ^ Province Introduces Legislation that Would Extend Daylight Saving Time in Manitoba (The Official Time Amendment Act,The Official Time Act)
  11. ^ Bill n°2 : Legal Time Act
  12. ^ An Act to Amend the Time Uniformity Act
  13. ^ Changes to daylight saving time in New Brunswick in 2007 (05/12/23)
  14. ^ Alberta sees the light with a timely announcement
  15. ^ Daylight Saving Time Regulations Archived 2014-04-19 at the Wayback Machine
  16. ^ New Daylight Saving Time Takes Effect in 2007
  17. ^ Nova Scotia to Change Daylight Saving Time
  18. ^ Yukon To Adopt Extended Daylight Saving Time Starting March 2007 Archived 2013-10-09 at the Wayback Machine
  19. ^ An Act Respecting Standard Time and Daylight Time in the Province
  20. ^ Nunavut News/North "Nunavut to follow new seasonal time standard"

External linksEdit