Before taking theory and practical tests (Quick Read)

What do you need to do to pass the theory and practical driving tests? Our guide to help you through the process of learning to drive


Apply for your provisional driving licence

You can get a Provisional licence when aged 17 or 16 if you receive Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

To get the licence online cost £34, you will need a UK passport no more than five years old.

Applying by post is £43, and you can pick up a “D1 Application Form” from the Post Office.

Only use the Gov.UK website when you make an online application, Unofficial sites exist and will charge up to four times the official amount.

Eyesight, you need to be able to read a car number plate from a distance of 20 metres, if you need glasses or contacts sort it out now because you’re driving instructor will test you.

Click for how to get a provisional licence


The fastest way to pass your driving test

What is the fastest way to pass your driving test if you timed everything to perfection and passed at the first attempt?

  • Well, you should apply for your provisional licence today and start revising long before taking the theory test which you may book when you have a licence.
  • Line up a driving instructor so lessons can start when your provisional arrives.
  • Pass your theory test the first time.
  • With a theory pass certificate, you can book the practical test, pass the first time and it’s that simple.

Ok, there is a bit more to know read our detailed schedule how to pass quickly.

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How much does it cost to learn to drive?

The cost of learning to drive includes more than you might think! Apart from lessons, there are other things to consider.

  • Provisional Licence
  • Driving lessons
  • Theory test and DVLA learning material, books, DVD’s or online.
  • Practical test
  • Learner driver insurance and fuel to practice with family or friends

Young Car Driver calculates the average cost of passing the driving test to be £1559, see how we arrive at this figure.

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Driving lessons – choose the best instructor for you!

You can start driving lessons when you have a provisional licence and before taking the theory test.

DVLA state 9/10 young drivers passing at the first attempt need between 30 and 40 hours of lessons with an Approved Driving Instructor before taking the driving test.

Plus, about 20 hours of practice between lessons with family or friends.

Take your driving lessons with an Approved Driving Instructor ADI they display a Green badge on the vehicle. A Pink Badge means the instructor is not yet qualified.

Driving schools offer introduction lesson discounts and savings when you block book a specified number of lessons.

Lessons average out at about £24 for a one-hour duration if you prefer two-hour session, ask for a discount.

What you need to consider when choosing a driving instructor, do they offer:

  • Male or female instructor?
  • Collect from work or home?
  • Different cars to choose to lear in
  • Assistance with your theory tests

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Practice driving with a family member or friend

DVLA say “Young drivers with 20 hours tuition with family and friends before taking the driving test are more likely to pass at the first attempt.”

By law the person to supervise you must be at least 21 years old and hold a GB, NI or EU full licence for at least three years.

There is no doubt learning to drive with a parent or friend can be a stressful time for both the supervisor and the learner.

Set some basic guide rules, and don’t forget the car you’re driving is probably the owner’s pride and joy and they may not have given tuition before!

Consider taking out learner driver insurance to drive a car owned by someone else, doing so will protect their no claims discount.

Display of L Plates is compulsory and using temporary mirrors like the driving schools will give the supervisor better visibility from the passenger seat.

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Learner driver insurance will protect the owners NCB

Learner driver insurance takes some of the pressure away from learning to drive in someone else’s car.

  • The insurance is in the name of the learner driver.
  • In the event of a claim the car owners “No Claims Discount” is not at risk.
  • Learner driver insurance is a Comprehensive cover.

Most learner driver insurance policies do:

  • Require the person supervising to be aged 25+.
  • Impose a driving restriction of 6 am to 10 pm.

Click for Learner Driver Insurance explained


Theory tests – most people fail at first attempt!

No doubt revising for the theory may be like going back to school, but there is no other solution.

If you don’t revise, you’re unlikely to pass.

Swot, for the test with the official DVSA (the people who set the test) range of informative and authoritative Books, Software Downloads, Apps, DVDs, and CD-ROMS.

Click for passing the theory test


Is an intensive driving course right for you?

With an intensive driving course, you have to learn a lot of information over a very short time span.

An intensive course can last as little as a week with up to six hours of lessons a day before taking the driving test at the end of the week.

Taking semi-intensive lessons might be a better option!

Less intensive driving courses can last between two and ten weeks and be a lot less pressure on the learner.

If you are serious about learning to drive over a far shorter period than the usual four to five months, consider the implications.

  • Intensive lessons can be very stressful.
  • Ask yourself! Is this the right option for you.?

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Learning to drive

Other Young Car Driver information – learning to drive

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