Frequently asked questions
How do I apply for my provisional driving licence?
You can apply for your first provisional driving licence by visiting GOV.UK www.gov.uk/apply-first-provisional-driving-licence
What should I do if I lose or damage my provisional driving licence?
Should you need to replace your provisional or full driving licence you can apply for your new driving licence by visiting GOV.UK www.gov.uk/apply-online-to-replace-a-driving-licence.
What should I bring to my first lesson?
Before we go out I will need to see and check your provisional driving licence. To do this you will need to email me a photograph of both sides of your provisional driving licence.
For me to check your licence you will need to generate a check code by clicking here and following the steps below:
If you need to wear glasses or contact lenses to read number plates and drive, please remember to bring them with you or be wearing your contact lenses when you come out for your lesson.
How do I book my theory test?
You can book your theory test at www.gov.uk/book-theory-test.
Make sure that you use the official GOV.UK website to book your theory test. This way you will not be paying over the government recommended theory test cost of £23, there are a lot of scams about and you don’t want to end up paying extra for your test and then turn up to find there has not been one booked for you.
Can I change the date of my theory test?
Yes you can change the date of your theory test. You must give at least three clear working days’ notice to change your test or you will have to pay again. Sundays and public holidays do not count as working days.
To change your driving test booking visit www.gov.uk/change-theory-test.
What do I do if I lose my theory test certificate?
If you lose your theory test certificate you can contact the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA ) at DVSA theory test enquiries
firstname.lastname@example.org with your:
- Date of birth.
- Driving licence number.
You will be sent a letter that you can take to your test instead of your pass certificate.
How do I book my practical driving test?
Once you have passed your theory test you can book your practical driving test. To do this you will need:
- Your UK provisional driver’s licence number.
- Name of the test centre you want to take the test at – Dumbarton.
- Your theory test pass certificate number.
- Your driving instructor’s reference number to check they’re available (can be used, but not needed if pupil liaises with me).
- A debit or credit card to pay the test fee.
- An email address, where you will receive your practical test booking details.
You can book your practical driving test at www.gov.uk/book-driving-test.
Make sure that you use the official GOV.UK website to book your driving test. This way you will not be paying over the government recommended driving test cost of:
- £62 Monday-Friday.
- £75 for Saturday and bank holiday tests.
- Extended driving test for disqualified drivers £124 Monday-Friday and £150 Saturday and bank holiday tests.
What do I need to take to my practical driving test?
On the day of your test you must take:
- Your UK driving licence.
- Your theory test pass certificate.
- A car – most pupils use their driving instructor’s, but you can use your own car if it meets the rules.
Can I change the date of my practical driving test?
Yes you can change the date of your practical driving test. You can do this a maximum of 6 times, as long as you change your booking within three clear working days of your original test date you will not have to pay any additional fees.
To change your driving test booking visit www.gov.uk/change-driving-test.
Can I cancel my practical driving test?
Yes you can cancel your practical driving test. You will need to cancel you practical driving test giving three clear working days notice to get a refund.
To cancel your driving test booking visit www.gov.uk/cancel-driving-test.
How many lessons will I need to learn to drive?
The DVSA recommends on average for pupils to pass the test they will have had a minimum 45 hours of driving lessons with a qualified driving instructor and 22 hours of additional private practice, 67 hours minimum. So if you’re properly prepared you are more likely to achieve a pass.
What if I have a reading difficulty, disability or health condition?
If you have a reading difficulty, disability or health condition when booking your driving test you should say if you have any conditions. You will still have to drive to the same standard to pass, but the examiner can make adjustments for your situation.
For more information about your options available to you, you can find them here.
Can I take someone with me on my practical driving test?
Yes you can take someone with you on your driving test.
Your examiner will ask if you want someone to:
- Sit in the back of the car during the test.
- Be with you for the result and feedback.
This will usually be me your driving instructor, but you can take a relative or friend. They cannot take any part in the test.
- Be over 16.
- Follow the rules about observing tests.
Am I able to have driving practice with a family member or friend in my own, family or friends car?
- Some pupils may be able to have practice with their own, family or friends car. When having private practice with a family member or friend we recommend that you practice the skills and subjects that we have covered in our lessons. This will consolidate what we have been working on and give you more driving experience the more you do. Going outwith the skills and subjects covered can put pupils in environments they are not equipped to deal with and can cause a pupil to panic and regress in their driving.Before you go out with a family member or friend it is essential that both you and the supervisor meet all of the legal requirements, including licensing and insurance rules.
- Be at least 17 years old.
- Have a valid provisional driving licence (for the type of vehicle being used – manual or automatic).
- Be insured to drive the vehicle.
- Ensure the vehicle is in a safe and legal condition.
- Meet the legal minimum eyesight standards.
- Only drive when supervised by a person who is at least 21 years old and has a valid driving licence, which they have held for at least three years.
- Put L Plates (or D Plates in Wales) on the front and rear of their vehicle.
The supervising driver must:
- Be at least 21 years old.
- Have a full driving licence (for the type of vehicle being used – manual or automatic).
- Have held that valid licence for a minimum of three years.
- Ensure the car is in a safe and legal condition.
- Meet the minimum eyesight standards.
- Ensure the car displays L Plates (or D Plates in Wales) when a learner is driving.
- Not receive any payment for supervising the learner (unless they are an Approved Driving Instructor).
- Comply with road traffic laws, such as not drinking and driving or using a hand held mobile phone for any purpose, even though they are in the passenger seat.
Am I able to have driving lessons with my driving instructor in my own or family car?
Some pupils may want to receive lessons in their own or family car, particularly where a pupil has already achieved their full driving licence and is looking for some more driving experience.
This is also a good idea where the car will be used for a pupil’s test. We are able to offer pupils’ training in their own car, provided the car is registered, roadworthy and comprehensively insured.
Prior to any training being conducted in the pupil’s car, we will check the car for its road worthiness. The checks will include the following items:
- The vehicle is comprehensively insured and the customer’s insurance company is notified that it will be used by a driving instructor to conduct training in.
- The tyres:
- are correctly inflated (air pressures must reflect the manufacturer’s recommendation as a minimum).
- have appropriate levels of tread.
- are not damaged in any way.
- All indicators, headlights and brake lights are working and clean.
- Seats and seat belts are in good working order and are not damaged or twisted.
- Any loose items in the cabin of the vehicle are stowed in the boot area.
- The windows and interior are clean.
- The vehicle has sufficient fuel to last the duration of the lesson.
Are automatic cars easier to drive?
Yes driving an automatic car is easier as you do not need to learn clutch control. All the other skill requirements for driving are still the same, like observations, judgement and anticipation, so these skills will still need to be learned. Learning good clutch control is something I can help you with and once you have learnt that, driving in different environments should be less stressful and not as difficult.
Automatic cars are more expensive to buy, whether new or second hand. As they are less common, automatics will be more expensive to get repaired if they do go wrong. Learning and passing your test in an automatic means you will only have a licence to drive an automatic car so if you wanted to drive a manual car you will have to sit another test in a manual car.