Top Tips for your Practical Driving Test

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Very few people ever feel completely ready for, and confident about, their driving test, even after taking endless driving lessons and learning on the road for hundreds of miles and dozens of hours.

You will take the practical test at a driving test centre. The examiner will check your eyesight, ask a number of questions relating to vehicle safety and assess your practical driving skills for around forty minutes. This part of the test is normally split into two. You will perform various manoeuvres and follow the examiner’s directions in the first part, while the independent driving test in the second part includes you having to follow some directions, together with an easy to understand diagram and/or traffic signs. You will have a much better chance with a lot of preparation in the real world, but some handy tips can also serve to keep you on track.

Planning and budget

You need to allow yourself enough time to gain driving skills and then successfully past the driving test. You should not try to speed through this process too fast, as a number of skills develop naturally by experience and it can be expensive to have to take numerous tests. Allow yourself to be advised on when you are ready to take the test by your instructor. You also need to take into consideration the various costs involved in learning to drive, to make sure you can afford to do so. Those costs include the theory test, the practical test, a provisional driving licence, and professional driving lessons, with the average time in the United Kingdom being 45 hours.

Regular lessons and progress logs

Try to have lessons as regularly as possible and aim to spend at least two hours behind the wheel per week. This will allow you to make consistent progress, make the most of your instructor time, avoid forgetting what you have already learned and further boost your confidence levels. When you reach a large milestone, note it down in a progress log and celebrate the achievement. If your tutor does not have their own progress log, as some do, consider creating one of your own.


Try and get as much practice as you can with friends and family members as well as your instructor. The more experience you have, the more confident you will become. Those who accompany you must be over 21 years of age, and must have had a full UK driving licence for more than three years. The right insurance needs to be in place too.


Try to pass your theory test after doing practical training for between ten to fourteen hours. After passing the theory you can then book the practical and put all your energy into achieving that goal. It is also a good idea to take at least one mock test using a test route and under accurate test conditions. Try to avoid telling others the date of your real test, as this can place you under additional pressure.

Keep calm

The last important tip is to get plenty of sleep the night before the test, and try to stay calm. If you do not understand an instruction, do not be shy about asking your examiner to repeat it.