What to Expect on the Day of Your Driving Test
So the big day has arrived, after all those lessons, parallel parks, dual carriageways, ups and downs it all boils down to 35 minutes in a car with a stranger and a clip board. The nerves are probably kicking in by now and you’ve forgotten which pedal is which let alone how to use them.
It will be fine. The more prepared you are the better.
The more you know about the process the less scary the day will be and that’s what we can help with today.
Is there anything I need to do on the day before my test?
Confirm the time with your instructor, make sure you are both turning up at the same time. Our driving instructors will book your test for you to save any confusion.
You will need to bring your provisional licence with you and your theroy pass certificate.
So the morning arrives and you’re getting jittery. Try to avoid watching a billion YouTube videos the night before on how to drive that will only serve to confuse you. They are great for learning but the night before the test it will just increase your nerves. If you want to check a particular topic that’s OK just don’t overdo it. (Check our YouTube Channel for all the information you will need.)
You’ve done the practice, you’re ready, you’ve got this.
Maybe also take the time to revise your Show me and Tell me questions; being confident with these is an easy way to help calm the nerves.
What happens once my instructor has picked me up?
We tend to pick you up an hour before the test, this gives you time to get there and warm up those finely honed skills you’ve been working on. Before you leave your home check,
HAVE YOU GOT YOUR LICENCE?
Whilst driving to the Test Centre, take the opportunity to ask any final questions you may have. We aim to get to the Test centre 10 minutes early. We’ll park the car up, engine off, one big deep breath and in you go.
What happens when you get to the Driving Test Centre?
You’ll take a seat in the waiting room and then remember that all that expert training you had will get you through the next 35 minutes. The examiner will come out and call your name. Up you get with confidence and say hello. They will ask to see your licence (no matter how bad the picture may be you do have to show them). You will then need to sign the test form or ipad declaring that the car you’re driving is insured and that you have lived in the UK for 185 days in the last 12 months.
This signature needs to match the one on your licence, so if you signed your licence a while ago when you were planning on becoming famous but have since changed your signature you will need to either change your licence or practice your old signature. Next, the examiner will ask if the address on your licence is your current address. This will effect what happens at the end of the driving test but we will get to that later, don’t panic if it doesn’t.
All good, the examiner is happy you are who you say you are and off you go outside. First they will ask you to read a number plate of a car at a distance of 20 meters. Wow that was easy! Let’s hope the rest of the test goes like that. On the way over to your car or when you get into the car they will ask the ‘Tell me question’. I’m sure you will have practiced these to death, which is great as nailing this question is a great way to calm your nerves and also set a good first impression with the examiner.
Eyesight check and ‘tell me’ question done.
“Wow I’m breezing this, what next?”
The examiner will then check around the car for any safety issues. Don’t worry about this as your instructor will have checked these beforehand. Your examiner will then explain what is about to happen and what the Driving Test will entail.
What will my driving test entail?
It will last around 35-40 minutes and take in a variety of different roads. You will spend 20 minutes driving independently, this can be either following signposts or the sat nav. The examiner will set up the sat nav, you just need to follow the directions. You will also have to perform a reverse manoeuvre on your test, these include Parallel parking, Reverse Bay parking, Forward Bay parking and Parking on the right hand side of the road. Try not to worry about this if you’ve had the proper training these should be an opportunity to show off your skills to the examiner. Your “Show me” question will be asked whilst on the move, again if this has been practiced it should be a breeze and not anything you won’t be doing once you pass your driving test. The examiner will also ask you to pull over on the left on a few occasions. Don’t rush this, it’s not an Emergency Stop. 1 in 3 Driving Tests do an Emergency Stop this is not done without prior warning, the examiner will stop you beforehand to explain that he is about to ask you to perform it. That’s it. 35-40 minutes of driving a nice man/woman around your local area, nothing to be worried about really.
Will I get my result at the end of the driving test?
Yes, the examiner will give you your result almost immediately and also any feedback that is needed. They will ask if you want your instructor to listen to this. I believe this is always a good idea, whatever the result. If you have passed, your examiner will offer to take your licence and send you your nice new shiny pink licence in the post. This is definitely the best option, unless your address is wrong, in which case you will need to send it off yourself with your new address.
Once I’ve passed, what’s next?
I would always suggest a motorway lesson and then enjoy the freedom of driving!