Cost of learning to drive UK (What are the average cost of driving lessons?)

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Infographic – cost of learning to drive

How much does it cost to learn to drive in the UK

How much do driving lessons cost?

The cost of driving lessons can vary greatly depending on where you live in the UK. Of course, the amount you spend on lessons will also depend on how many hours you need in the car with an instructor.

Franchise driving schools (for example, The AA)

Learning with one of the well-known franchise driving schools, such as The AA, will cost on average about £28 for a one-hour driving lesson in the Greater Manchester area. And, it could reach up to £38 per lesson if you live in Surrey.

You could achieve significant savings of up to 20% by having two-hour driving sessions instead and block booking lessons in advance.

Franchise driving schools also offer extra services that can help, such as theory test support or even getting to choose which car you drive.

Independent driving instructors

Alternatively, you could choose to have driving lessons with an independent driving instructor. They’re often cheaper, with the average UK price per hour of £25 before discounts.

How many hours of driving lessons do you need?

According to the DVSA, drivers who pass their test on the first attempt need 47 hours of lessons with a qualified instructor, supplemented by 22 hours of supervised driving practice with a family member or friend.

Using the UK average rate for an independent driving instructor of £25, you’ll need around £1,175 to cover the cost of your driving lessons.

£1,175

YCD estimates you’ll need to spend over £1,100 on driving lessons if using an independent instructor.

Young man and women in car happy and no longer worrying about the cost of learning to drive

How much does Learner Driver Insurance cost?

First of all, you should know that you don’t need to take out additional insurance when taking lessons from a qualified driving instructor – this is in the fee you pay.

However, if you want to go out on the road with a family member or friend, you will need to ensure some form of insurance. There are two ways to do this:

  • You could ask the car owner to add you to the car’s existing insurance policy as an additional driver. Bear in mind this does put them at risk of losing their No Claims Bonus should you get into any trouble.
  • Another option is to take out Learner Driver Insurance. An insurance policy in your name allows you to drive someone else’s car with fully comp cover. It also means that the owner’s No Claims Bonus isn’t affected if you were to have an accident.

According to MoneySupermarket, you should expect to pay around £75-125 for a months’ cover, subject to your age, location and the car you’ll be driving.

Warning!

Don’t be fooled into paying for your provisional licence through a third party website. There’s no benefit, and they could charge you up to three times the original price. Learning to drive is expensive enough already!

Extra fees – tests, study and provisional licence

Finally, there are several other costs you’ll need to pay to cover the cost of learning to drive:

  • Provisional licence fee: £34 online or £43 by post
  • Theory test fee: £23
  • The practical test fee: £62 on weekdays or£75 at weekends
  • DVSA theory test study books: £30 (optional)

So, what’s the total?

Overall, you should expect to pay £1,724 throughout the learning process, should you pass your test the first time. This covers:

  • 45 hours of driving lessons with an independent driving instructor (£1175)
  • A one-hour driving lesson before your test, using the test car (£50)
  • Provisional licence and test fees (£149)
  • Four months’ supervised driving insurance (£250)
  • Fuel (£100)

The RAC have also produced a good article about the expense of getting your driving licence and they arrive at a similar figure to YoungCarDriver.

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