HOV Lanes

High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes were created to move more people in fewer vehicles, reducing congestion and greenhouse gas emissions. HOV lanes are in place on several provincial highways and urban corridors in the Lower Mainland and Kelowna.

High Occupancy Vehicle

  • A passenger vehicles under 5,500 kg Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) and meets the minimum number of persons specified by a highway sign
  • Qualifying EVs with permits are exempt from the occupancy requirement
  • Buses
  • Motorcycles
  • Taxis
  • Handy Darts
  • Blood delivery vehicles when transporting blood or blood products
  • Emergency vehicles
  • Peace officer on active duty
  • Marked vehicles responding to a disabled vehicle or other emergency on the highway

Non-High Occupancy Vehicle

  • Passenger vehicles with less than the minimum number of specified persons
  • Vehicles over 5,500 kg GVW (except buses)

There are two types of HOV Lanes:

  • Freeway (higher speed corridors) the HOV lane is the fast or median lane as vehicles are moved between interchanges over greater distances
  • Urban Corridor (lower speed corridors)  the HOV lane is in the curb lane as vehicle movements are distributed along the corridor more frequently; and transit mobility is better serviced

You must enter and leave HOV lanes only when the line between lanes is a broken line.

Exceptions for non-HOV vehicles where the HOV lane is not part of a freeway. 1. You may turn right into the HOV lane, but then must immediately merge into the non-HOV lane. 2. You may enter an HOV lane in order to turn right at an intersection.