Tips For Passing Your Practical Driving Test
The practical driving test is regarded as
one of the most nerve-wrecking exams you
will ever do and it should not need to be.
It is worth to remember that, however
stringent it may appear, the test is
designed to assess that you have the basic
competence required to drive alone and
examiners do not expect to see an expert,
that’s why you are allowed up to 15
If you follow these few advices you will have a high chance to pass your driving test first time with flying colours.
Preparation for the driving test
The DSA regularly publish a list for common reasons for failing the driving test.
However, the most common reason for failure is that candidates take the test when they are not ready.
Are you ready?
So practice, practice and more good practice until you can drive for several lessons and in different driving conditions without assistance.
If your driving instructor is still giving you help or instructions you are not ready, simple as that.
Parking and reversing manoeuvres should be naturally performed constantly with little effort and in a variety of situations and gradients.
Practicing outside lessons with parents or friends could be of great help.
Having several mock tests is important in order to familiarize with the test format and to get used to cope with possible mistakes. They are also useful to understand how the test is marked and the difference between minor and major fault.
If possible have a mock test (and lessons) at the same time of your scheduled test to have a good idea of what sort of traffic volume you will find on test day.
The test day
Confidence is the key
If you and your instuctor decided that you
are ready to take the test, than it means
that you can definitely do it!
Think positive – remove all the negative
thoughts and consider the test only a short
drive where you will show the examiner that
you can drive alone.
Try to silently repeat to yourself “this is
a piece of cake”, at the end you will be
surprised to realize how short the test is!
Make sure that you book at least 1 hour to warm up prior your test. This will help to get your mind into the swing of things.
During your training you will have noticed when your concentration reaches its peak, so use this time to bring your attention level to its highest point for the beginning of the test.
Practice all the manoeuvres and have a short drive around the test centre to spot possible problems such as roadworks or similar
Focus on what’s happening well ahead of you and, silently, talk yourself through what might happen.
Keep your attention on your driving and don’t bother at what the examiner is writing,sometimes they tick certain boxes that are not related to driving faults.
If you are not sure about a direction or what the examiner has asked you to do, don’t be afraid to ask. Examiners are as helpful as possible and they will repeat the directions promptly.
It’s quite normal to make a mistake during
a driving test, in fact is very rare to
complete a test with a clean sheet.
If you make a mistake put it to the back
of your mind, don’t instantly assume you
have failed and continue to concentrate on
the task ahead, more often then not it’s a
minor fault but potentially it can be a
If during a manoeuvre you feel that you have
missed your point of turn, simply pull forward and explain the examiner that you need to try again so that they are aware of what you are doing.
There is a difference in “kissing” and “hitting” the kerb. The first case does not constitute a fail, provided that you have made effective observations.
I have stalled!
Stalling per se does not constitute a fail, unless you stall in a dangerous situation i.e. on entering a roundabout.
I have seen candidates stalling at the very beginning of their test and, on some occasions, the examiner was lenient enough to not mark it as they understand that nerves are at their peak in that moment.
If you stall deal with it, handle it properly and you will still pass.
This is actually a very simple part of the driving test. If you are taking your test it means that you can easily spot and understand traffic signs and follow the directions of the sat nav.
If you forget where you should go, simply ask the examiner and he/she will confirm the directions to you.
If you take the wrong direction but you do it correctly no faults will be recorded and the examiner will guide you back on route.