Newfoundland is located in a time zone unique in North America, half an hour later than Atlantic Time, one and a half hours later than Central Canada and four and a half hours later than the west coast of the country, the only place in Canada with a split in the set variations of one hour between time zones. Daylight Saving Time is observed from April to October after which the province returns to Newfoundland Standard Time.
Note: The Labrador portion of the province operates on Atlantic Standard Time (½ hour behind Newfoundland), except for the area on the coast from L'Anse au Clair to Cartwright which operates on Newfoundland Standard Time.
Many people wonder why Newfoundland has a time zone that is a half hour different rather than one hour. The system of Standard Time employs 24 meridians; each are theoretically the centres of 24 Standard Time zones. Each local governing body can choose in which Time Zone or part of a time zone it chooses to adopt. Newfoundland lies in the eastern half of its time zone and chooses to adopt its own time zone.
Newfoundland, (but not Labrador), lies squarely in the eastern half of its time zone, exactly three and a half hours from Greenwich. The Newfoundland government attempted to bring the province into conformity with the other Atlantic provinces in 1963, but withdrew in the face of stiff public opposition.
Other countries that operate on the half hour time difference are: Suriname, Iran, India and Sri Lanka.
Like most provinces in Canada, Daylight Saving Time is observed in Newfoundland, where the time is shifted forward by 1 hour, resulting in a 2.5 hours difference behind Greenwich Mean Time (GMT-2:30).
After the Summer months the time is shifted back by 1 hour resulting in the normal 3.5 hours difference to GMT.