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How to get your driving licence: costs, exam tips and post-Brexit changes

Driving School

  • The times of just turning up are over, say driving instructors, as half of all people fail their test
  • Britain’s driving test has become the difficult in the world, because of the pass rate standing at only 47%.

We break down what applicants are required to accomplish to pass, common mistakes to prevent and top tips from the professionals:

Step one: getting a provisional licence:

Applicants can apply online and must:

  1. be a resident of good Britain
  2. meet minimum age and eyesight requirements
  3. never be prevented from driving for almost any reason
  4. possess a valid passport or other type of identity

Cost: £ 34

Step two: Driving lessons:

  • Once applicants have a provisional licence, they’ll certainly be allowed to start learning how exactly to drive. They’ve been advised to be taught by an approved driving instructor, but can also practise with friends and relatives under certain conditions. Learners must always have “L” plates displayed prominently on both the trunk and front of an automobile when driving.

Cost

  • There isn’t any set cost, as costs for official driving lessons vary widely across the country, plus some individuals will require more lessons than others. The DVLA does not require the very least amount of lessons, nevertheless the average person will need 47 hours of lessons and 22 hours of private practice before they are able to pass their test, in accordance with research because of the Driving Standards Agency, published because of the AA.

Step three: theory exam

  • The initial area of the exam is comprised of a 50-question multiple choice test that covers anything from road signs to safety questions. Applicants will need to get at the least 43 questions right within 57 minutes so that you can pass.
  • The next part is a hazard perception test, where applicants must identify 15 hazards in a series of short video clips. The faster an individual is in a position to identify the hazards, the larger they score. Applicants need certainly to score no less than 44 away from 75 to pass through.
  • Applicants must pass both areas of the test to check out the practical exam, which includes you need to take within two years of passing the idea test.

Cost: £ 25

Step four: practice exam

The practical exam comprises of three parts:

  1. Applicants will have to undergo an eyesight check, which involves reading a licence plate at distance of 20m. If an applicant fails the test, they will be unable to continue utilizing the exam.
  2. Applicants will likely be asked vehicle safety questions, also called “show me, tell me” questions.
  3. The examiner will likely then test a job candidate’s general driving ability by instructing them to conduct different manoeuvres in numerous road and traffic conditions, includes reversing. Learners will likely then be viewed as they drive without instruction. This section will last roughly 40 minutes.

New changes to your practical test came into effect in December to try and bring the format up to date by including modern driving styles and technology. They involve satnav challenges, tweaks to your manoeuvres, longer independent driving sections and an expanded distraction test.
Applicants must ensure they bring the correct documents, otherwise the test will soon be cancelled.
Cost: £ 62 on weekdays or £ 75 on evenings, weekends and bank holidays

Common mistakes

  • You might be allowed 15 minor errors just before fail a test, says The Independent. But “one big mistake, such as speeding or answering your phone, and you’re done, of course,” it adds.
  • Not as much as 50 per cent of men and women pass their practical test to their first attempt, and experts say there are often numerous things the culprit. Probably the most common mistakes include poor observation at junctions, neglecting to check blind spots during reverse parking, incorrect signal use, incorrect positioning on the way and driving in the wrong speed, based on the Car Expert.

Advice on passing

  • “The British driving test is one of difficult on earth,” argues driving instructor Will Dracot. “the occasions of turning up, driving for 40 minutes and passing are very well and truly over. You need to study because of this exam”. He advises students to gain the maximum amount of practice and preparation that you can before the test, and make certain that they’re comfortable, relaxed and well rested at the time of this exams.
  • Carbuyer implies that lots of people attempt to make the test too early. “A good instructor will recommend once you should book your test,” the web site says, “so do not be too hasty.”

The RAC also has a summary of handy ideas to help you pass the first occasion:

  1. Tune in to your instructor
  2. Bring your test in a rural location
  3. Be an early bird
  4. Use the instructor’s car
  5. Have a backseat driver
  6. Forget about mistakes
  7. Exaggerate those mirror checks
  8. Make inquiries
  9. Don’t attempt to second-guess the examiner
  10. Tune in to what you’re told at the conclusion of the test

Finally: try your absolute best to remain calm. “Any time you feel tense or feel you’ve lost your focus, or if you feel you’ve made an error on your own test, remember to focus on your breathing and take a few deep breaths,” says Auto Express. “this may calm your brain, stop you dwelling in past times and help you concentrate on the next instruction.”

Can you use your licence abroad?

  • At present, British driving licences are valid in every EU or European Economic Area (EEA) countries, and Switzerland.
  • Not in the EU/EEA, British drivers may require an International Driving Permit (IDP) that will be recognised in 140 countries all over the world and acts as temporary proof of driving ability for travellers.
  • You can get an IDP directly through the AA, the RAC or Post Office for £ 5.50. To meet the requirements you must: by a GB or Northern Ireland resident, have passed your driving test, be 18 or over.

Think about after Brexit?

  • Although the regards to Britain’s future relationship because of the EU have yet to be agreed, there clearly was the possibility British driving licences could become invalid after Brexit, with Brits attempting to drive from the continent obligated to pay for an innovative new permit.
  • Last month, the European Commission recently claimed the UK’s departure from the EU could begin to see the end of “mutual recognition” of licences.
  • In accordance with Auto Express, the Commission has said it had been likely British licences would not be valid overseas from next year, after EU law-based rights and benefits ceased for UK nationals.
  • A current meeting of EU officials suggested UK drivers would have to purchase an International Driving Permit (IDP), which would allow them to drive into the EU for as much as per year.
  • While the £ 5.50 fee “might not leave a major dent in your pocket, the inconvenience of getting to be approved for another permit could be enough to deter Brits from driving to neighbouring nations”, says the sunlight.
  • Leaving the EU is also likely to have an impact from the look of UK driving licences with MPs already suggesting the corner EU flag must certanly be replaced because of the Union Jack along with other regional banners.
  • For rules on driving in foreign countries it will always be good to check with a motoring organisation just like the AA or the RAC.

What about renting a car aboard?

  • In 2015, the DVLA introduced a greater driving licence checking system after British holidaymakers complained of difficulties in hiring cars abroad.
  • In the past, car rental companies have requested to start to see the green paper counterpart to a driver’s licence. Now they’ll be able to view a driver’s information on the DVLA electronic database.
  • To allow a car hire company or employer to see your driving record, it is important to create a “licence check code” by logging on to viewdrivingrecord.service.gov.uk. This single-use access code is only valid for 21 days.
  • Used alongside the final eight characters of the driving licence number, it’s going to let the company to determine what vehicles you can easily drive and any penalty points or disqualifications you have been given.
  • Employers who require to check a member of staff’s driving record will additionally be able to use the service.
  • Motorists can check their driving record by calling DVLA. They will certainly need their driving licence number (found in section five of their driving licence photocard), National Insurance number and postcode. Alternatively, drivers can put on by post to see just what information the DVLA holds on the driving licence.
  • The green counterparts are not the same whilst the old-style paper driving licences, which were issued before photocards came into existence as they are still employed by around eight million drivers.

Make certain you read our full article about driving school!