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The Complete Guide to Passing Your Driving Test

So, you've finally decided to get on with your driving. You're sick of having to walk from point A to point B or using public trabnsport and it's time to go on your own adventures with your own car and not be reliant on the unreliable public transport that you've struggled with for years. But you're new to all of this, and you've no idea where to start in your mission to start driving. That's why we've put together "The Complete Guide to Passing Your Driving Test".

Getting Your Provisional Licence


A provisional licence is like the start of freedom for teens (provided you get yours when you're a teen). It's the first step on the road to being fully road ready and giving you the ability to go where you want, when you want. Your provisional licence gives you permission to drive on UK roads (excluding motorways). Obviously if you've never been throught the process you don't know what to expect or what to do, so we've answered a few of your questions.


- What's a Provisional Licence?

The provisional driving licence is a temporary licence that gives the owner permission to drive on UK road (Excluding motorways, whilst accompanied/supervised by a driving instrcutor or another driver over the age of 21, who has held their full licence and has been driving for more than 3 years.

You are required to have a provisional licence before you are able to take your theory test, hazard perception or practical test and will also need it in order to partake in your first driving lesson.
- What are the Requirements for your Provisional?

In order for you to aquire your provisional licence you need the following:
  • Be at least 15 years and 9 months old.
  • Be able to read a number plate from at least 20 metres away.
  • Provide an identity documents unless you have a valid UK biometric passport.
  • Provide addressed where you've lived over the last 3 years.
  • Pay £34 by Mastercard, VIsa, Electron or any other major debit/credit card.
  • Have your National Insurance number if known.
- How do I Apply for my Provisional?

You can apply for your provisional licence online at You can also apply for your provisional licence via post.
- How Much Does it Cost?

The cost of applying for your provisional is £34. Payable via any major debit/credit card. If applying via post, then the charge is £43.
- When Will my Provisional Licence Arrive?

Applying for your provisional will take you around 30 minutes, once you've applied, you'll usually have your licence within two weeks of them receiving your application. If you wait more than two weeks, contact the DVLA.
- How to Replace Your Provisional Licence?

If you managed to lose your licence and wish to replace it. You'll need to:
  • Pay £20 via any major debit/credit card.
  • Have a valid UK passport or other form of identity.
  • Have you National Insurance number.
  • Provide addressed where you've lived for the last 3 years.

You can apply via phone, online or post.


You can also check out these useful links for extra information and more.
Apply for Your Provisional Licence
Apply for a Replacement Provisional Licence
A Guide to Applying for Your Provisional & What It'll Cost


Finding a Driving Instructor


You finally have your provisonal licence and it's time to start your lessons. You can get some practise in with a family member or friend provided they meet the requirements to be allowed to teach you. You'll eventually have to get yourself some lessons with a professional instructor, but choosing an instructor or driving school can be tough as you have a lot of questions.


- Who Can Teach Me to Drive?

You can be taught to drive by anyone - family member, friend or driving instructor - provided they're:
  • Be 21 years old or over.
  • Have held a full valid driving licence for a minimum of 3 years.
  • Have a driving licence which covers you to drive in the vehicle that you're supervising in.
  • Meet the minimum eyesight standards, and always wear glasses or contact lenses where and when needed.
  • Make sure the car is in a safe condition.
  • Make sure the car is displaying 'L' plates on both the front and back of the car.

- How Much Will It Cost To Start My Driving Lessons?

The average cost of a driving lesson is now around £24. It is recommended that you have 47 hours of driving tuition under the supervision of a professional instructor, meaning the average, recommended total cost is around £1,128.
- Can I Change Driving Instructor?

If for some reason you decide you would like to change driving instructor, you are free to do so. However, this may differ from one driving school to another and is obviously dependant on the rules of your driving school.
- Why Are Driving Instructors So Mean?

We decided to include this as a little bonus question, as it gets asked more often that it should. So you've had a bad experience with an instructor, and they just seem to be rude all the time. Of course this has nothing to do with them being a driving instructor, but them as a person. If your instructor seems rude, you can request a new instructor from the school.


You should also check out these useful links for extra information and more.
Find Driving Schools, Lessons & Instructors
Finding a Driving Instructor
How to Find a Good Driving Instructor


Tests & Practice - Theory Test


You finally found a driving instructor and have been putting the hours in and they're paying off! You're confident behind the wheel, enjoying yourself on the road and now you just need to get your theory practice down and you'll be on your way.


- How Do I Book My Test?

You can book your test online via the website. Before you start you need your:
  • UK driving licence number.
  • Email address - you have to book by phone if you don't have an email address.
  • Valid credit/debit card.

- Do I Need to Take My Theory Test?

If you're a new, learner driver, you must take and pass your theory test before you can book your practical test.
- Can I Practice My Theory Test?

Just like with any test, you can of course practice. There are numerous online theory tests as well as a number of books too. It's worth practicing to make sure you pass first time.
- What Will It Cost To Take My Theory test?

In order to take your theory test you will have to pay £23.
- Where Do I Sit My Test?

You will sit your test at your local driving theory test centre. You can find your local centre by visiting this site: Find Your Theory Test Centre
- What Happens If I'm Late to My Test?

Late admission into the theory test exam room would be distracting for others and so isn't allowed. Appointments are given as 15 minutes before the start of exam conditions. Admission is not allowed once the exam has started.
- How Many Questions Are There & How Many Do I Need to Pass?

There are 50 questions on the test, which must be completed within the 57 minutes time allowance.
- How Long is My Theory Test Certificate Valid For?

Theory test certificates are valid for two years from the date you passed the test.
- How Long Will The Test Take?

You're given 57 minutes in order to complete your theory test.
- Can You Do Your Theory Test Before Your Driving Lessons?

You may take your theory test while still taking driving lessons. In order to take your practical driving testm you must have passed your theory and hazard perception tests.


You should also check out these useful links for extra information and more.
Book Your Theory Test
Practice Your Theory Test Online
Find Out Everything About Your Theory Test


Tests & Practice - Hazard Perception


Theory test is almost over, now it's time to get through your hazard perception questions. Just finish this test and you'll be behind the wheel attempting your practical test and hopefully you'll be driving soon.


- What is a Hazard Perception Test?

The hazard perception test is the second part of your theory test, assessing a situation for potential hazards.
- How Do I Book My Test?

As your hazard perception test is half of your theory test, you can book your test online via the website. Before you start you need your:
  • UK driving licence number.
  • Email address - you have to book by phone if you don't have an email address.
  • Valid credit/debit card.

- Can I Practice my Hazard Perception Test?

Just like with any test, you can of course practice. There are numerous online theory tests as well as a number of books too. It's worth practicing to make sure you pass first time.
- What Will It Cost To Take The Test?

Once again, due to the hazard perception test being part of your theory test, the cost is £23.
- Where Do I Sit The Test?

You will sit your test at your local driving theory test centre. You can find your local centre by visiting this site: Find Your Theory Test Centre
- How Many Questions Are There & How Many Do I Need to Pass?

This part of the test requires you to view 14 hazard clips lasting roughly one minute each and you'll be required to find 15 hazards, at least one in each clip.


You should also check out these useful links for extra information and more.
Understanding Your Hazard Perception
Practice Your Hazard Perception Online


Tests & Practice - Practical Driving Test


You've managed to revise your way through your tehory test and you're now faced with the final major hurdle! You need to prove you're capable behind the wheel, while being scrutinised by your driving instructor and having your every move judged and marked down, so no pressure.


- Where Do I Take My Test?

Your practical driving test will take place on the roads around where you live or meet your instructor. Often the instructor will ask you to drive a certain route or direction in order to see how you deal with various aspects of driving.
- How Long is My Driving Test?

Your driving test will last approximatley 40 minutes, unless you're completing an extended driving test because you've been banned from driving, if this is the case, your test will last approximatley 70 minutes.
- How Much Does My Practical Test Cost?

Your practical driving test will cost £62 if taken on a weekday. If you take the test on an evening, weekend or bank holiday, the charge is £75.
- How Many Faults Can I Make Before Failing?

There are three types of faults:
  • A dangerous fault - Involving actual danger to you, the examiner, public or property.
  • A serious fault - Something potentially dangerous.
  • A drivig fault - This isn't potentially dangerous, but if you keep making the same fault, it could end up becoming a serious fault.
Dangerous and serious faults are known as 'majors' and driving faults are known as 'minors'. You'll pass your test if you make no more than 15 minor faults and no major faults.


You should also check out these useful links for extra information and more.
Tips to Help you Pass Your Driving Test
Book Your Driving Test


Driving Laws & Regulations


We don't suppose there are many questions you don't know the answer to here... You have just passed your driving test after all! So we'll just leave you with a few resources.



You should check out these useful links for extra information and more.
Traffic Offences FAQ's
Driving Laws Latest Questions & Answers


Your First Car


It's an important day! The final hurdle! You have to decide where you're going to get your first car from... Oh the choices!


- Can a First Time Car Buyer Lease?

The simple answer is yes. However with leases there are many advantages and disadvantages. For example, the payments on a lease are often low and allow you to afford a nicer car than you probably could if you bought it outright. However, the disadvantages of leasing are that you require a higher credit score, negotiating your lease can be difficult and you ahve to watch your miles, as many lease cars have a limit of 12,000 miles and charge 10-30 pence per mile above this limit. So, it's up to you to decide whether it's worth it.
- Where Should I Buy my First Car?

If you're opting to purchase your new car outright, then you have two choices to start with. Brand new or used? If you opt for a brand new car from the showroom, then you'll be looking to purchase your car from any number of dealerships in your area. While if you're lookign to purchase a used car, there are many sites online for you to browse. Sites like eBay,, & many more.
- Which Car Make & Models are Good for Frist Time Buyers?

This is something more based on choice but there are many cars that are often cheaper to insure and drive for many reasons. A few examples of good cars for first time buyers are: Peugeot 208 Hatchback, Ford Fiesta Hatchback, Volkswagen Polo Hatchback, Mini, Fiat 500, Vauxhall Corsa and so mnay more. A quick search online can return mnay results and even explain fully as to why these cars are good for first time buyers.


Don't forget to check these helpful sites for more information too.
How to Buy your First Car
Best First Cars for New Drivers
Top Tips on Buying Your First Car




Finally it's time to get insured and hit the road! No more waiting on taxis, public transport and lifts from mum.


- Will Car Insurance Cover Theft?

Your car insurance will likely cover theft so long as you take the right steps in reporting it. Contact the police immediately and get a crime reference number before contacting your insurance company, your insurance ocver levels will differ depending on the policy. You can find out more using the resources below.
- Will Car Insurance Pay for Repairs?

Basic car insurance includes and covers a wide range of protection, including collision coverage. While mechanical repairs aren't usually covered by basic insurance unless they're an immediate result of a collision.
- Can I Buy Car Insurance Online?

You can insure your car online using one of many insurance providers websites, you will need some basic information; divers' license number, make, model and year of your vehicle etc.
- When Do I Renew My Car Insurance?

When you purchase your car insurance, it will be valid for a set number of years and months, you are required by law to renew your insurance before it ends, as you are not legally allowed to drive without insurance.
- Will My Car Insurance Go Down?

Over time your car insurance will go down, however this isn't based on age etc. but instead is based on your driving, claims and more. Insurers are allowed to vary the amount they charge you for premiums based on your age as part of a risk assessment as many sources do show that younger drivers are more likely to get into accidents. However, there is no certain age for your premiums to go down, instead it depends how long you have been driving and any accidents or claims you've had - This builds your no claims bonus and thus reduces the price you'll find yourself paying for insurance.
- Good Car Insurance for Teens?

If you're a teen, then you've probably already been made aware that you're insurance costs are going to be significantly high, especially if you're male. However there are a few ways you can bring these costs down and make it slighty easier on yourself. owning a car that is at less risk of accidents or less of a temptation to thieves will be cheaper to insure, so while having a great first car is... well, great, it might not always be worth it. You can also have a black box installed in your car, this measures how safely you drive and relays this back to your insurance provider. This way they are able to see how safely you're driving and offer you your insuance at a cost they feel fair based on how you've been driving.
- Car Insurance for People with Bad Credit?

If you have a bad credit score you could see your insurance prices rise slightly as some insurers use your credit score to determine how reliable you are as a customer, this is because people with a lower/worse credit score are statistically more likely to make a claim. This is especially true if you decide to pay foir your insurance in monthly installments. You can however take similar steps as any teen driver in reducing your insurance costs.


You'd be crazy to miss the information being offered by these sources.
Buying Car Insurance Online
Does Car Insurance Cover all Repairs
Car Theft & Insurance Claims
How to Save on Teenage Car Insurance


Posted by Mark Harris
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