Driving Test Tips Tips for passing driving test

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Infographic – Top Ten reasons for failing the driving test

Driving Test Tips

Ten tips to help pass your practical driving test

The best way to passing your practical driving test is – of course – to practice. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t things you can do to help boost your chances.

Follow our 10 tips for passing your driving test

1. Take a lesson before the test

Have a lesson with your driving instructor right before your test will make sure you’re comfortable with the car and can also help to get you into the right frame of mind.

2. Don’t use your car

Use your driving instructor’s car. It’s what you’ve learned in, so you’ll be used to how it feels on the road and be well prepared for the ‘show me, tell me’ questions.

3. The first 30 seconds!

The first 30 seconds driving in the car are the most important as the last thing you want is to knock your confidence from the word go.

As you put the car into gear and drive away from the test centre, stay ultra-focused, take it slowly and remain calm.

4. Ask the examiner

If you don’t hear an instruction properly, or just want to double-check, don’t be afraid to ask the examiner to repeat things.

Similarly, during the independent driving part of your test, feel free to ask your examiner to clarify the directions. It’s a test of your driving skills, not your navigational ability!

5. Exaggerate your mirror checks

The examiner will want to know you are checking your mirrors regularly and are aware of what’s around you. To make sure they don’t mark you down wrongly, exaggerate your mirror checks by moving your head when you do it. It might feel a little over the top, but it could be the difference between a pass and fail!

6. Be prepared for bad weather

Be prepared for all kinds of weather. A bit of rain won’t stop your test, so don’t be put off if you have your driving test in wet conditions.

During your lessons, it’s advisable to actively look to practice in different weather conditions to make sure you’re ready.


Last year 541,000 was the total number of young drivers aged between 17 and 26 taking their driving test for the first time. Of those 261,000 passed at their first attempt. That is an average first-time pass rate of 48%

Source DVSA, 2020

7 Don’t rush!

Don’t rush! Not only will you have less time to make decisions and control the car, but the faster you go, the more junctions and other potential hazards you’ll come across. Take it easy and don’t give yourself more work than you have to.

8. Don’t give up

If you think you’ve made a mistake and failed, don’t give up – just crack on. You never know, you might be mistaken. Also, you’ve paid for the examiner’s time, so you may as well get the most out of it.

9. Know what to expect

Make sure you know what to expect by reviewing how the practical driving test works. You don’t want to get caught off-guard!

10. How to help test nerves

Are you feeling nervous? Don’t worry; everyone does. The important thing is how you handle your nerves. Try and stay calm and use your nerves to your advantage by keeping you alert.

Read our advice on how to manage your driving test nerves.