1. Practical Test


Ok, your practical driving test. This is what you’ve been planning for and, training towards for some time. We know your going to be nervous about taking your practical driving test, and we know what it means to you. We know it's not just about being able to drive a car. It's about independence, not having to keep having to ask for lifts everywhere, relying on other people to take you places, and no more catching that bus. It's about freedom, being able to go where you want, when you want. It's about you having control over your life.

At Access Driving School our instructors appreciate this. That’s why over the period of time you have been taking lessons our aim will have been working towards this point of getting you through your driving test.


What do you need to do, to pass your test?


At the beginning of your driving test the examiner will check your eyesight (your instructor will have already checked your eyesight).

The vehicle safety check questions, also known as show me, tell me, will be asked at the beginning of your practical test. Theses are basic safety checks that a driver should carry out to ensure the vehicle is safe for use. Although some checks may involve the candidate in opening the bonnet to identify where fluid levels would be checked, pupils will not be asked to touch a hot engine, or physically check fluid levels. Your driving instructor will have compressively covered this subject with you before the practical driving test. Please Click Here for more information.

During the test you will need to show the examiner that you can drive in a confident, safe manner and without making any serious or dangerous faults, and no more than 15 minor faults. The duration of the test will last for around 40 minutes. During the test you will be required to carry out one of the following manoeuvres, and optionally the emergency stop: reverse parking behind a parked car or into a parking bay, reversing around a corner, or the turn in the road.

During the test the examiner will tell you in good time which way to go. If you go the wrong way do not panic, the examiner is testing your ability to drive, not your ability to follow directions. It is better to go the wrong way correctly than to go the right way incorrectly.

If at any time you are unsure what the examiner requires, do not hesitate to check what he or she wants; the examiner appreciates that you may be nervous, and will be happy to repeat, or clarify any instructions given. Try not to turn the examiner in to a mystical monster (not a bad one anyway) he is not there to fail you, but to assess if you can drive competently.

In your practical driving test there is an independent driving stage. Which is when you will be asked to drive independently for approximately 10 minutes. This will demonstrate to the examiner that you are able to follow verbal route directions or route direction signs, whilst still driving safely. The examiner will test you in one of three following ways, these are:


Verbal directions

The examiner will give you a number of verbal route directions to follow. They may also show you a simple diagram of the route to help you follow the directions. An example of what the examiner may say is 'At the end of the road turn right, then take your second left, then at the roundabout follow the road ahead.'


Road Signs

The examiner will ask you to follow the direction signs to a specific destination until further notice. For an example 'I would like you to follow the signs towards Leicester until further notice.'

Or it could be both

The examiner may give you a combination of both direction signs and verbal directions to follow. For an example 'I would like you to take the first exist at the roundabout, the second road on the left, and then follow the signs towards Leicester'.

If you cannot remember what directions were given ask the examiner, and they will confirm them to you. If you go off the independent driving route it won't affect the result of your test unless you commit a driving fault. If you go off the route or take a wrong turn, the examiner will help you to get back on the route and continue with the independent driving. If there happens to be poor or obscured traffic signs, the examiner will give you directions until you can see the next traffic sign. If this happens the examiner would say, 'There are no signs here. Just continue ahead please' and then, 'Now, carry on following the signs to Leicester'


  1. Tips to passing your driving test


  • Practice manoeuvres until you can carry them out without any minor faults. That will leave you with a margin of 15 faults for the rest of the drive on the day of your test.
  • Practice, practice and practice, until you can drive without verbal or physical intervention from your driving instructor for the duration of a full driving lesson.
  • Arrive at the test centre in plenty of time and, try to relax. If you have trained with Access Driving School you will already be to a good standard so have confidence in yourself.
  • Arrange to have an hour's Driving lesson around the area of the test centre on the day of your test. This will help you to warm up and get into the swing of things.
  • Think confident: Talk yourself (silently) through the test. Talk about hazards coming up, and how you are going to deal with them. This really focuses your mind on how you should be driving in order to pass the test.
  • Don't be afraid to ask: If you don't understand what the examiner has asked you to do, don't be afraid to ask him or her to repeat the instruction.
  • Stalling: if, unfortunately, you stall, deal with it and move on. As long as you don't stall in a dangerous situation, and as long as you handle it properly, this needn't count as a major fault, and you can still pass your test.
  • Have I already failed? If you feel you've made a mistake, don't instantly assume you've failed.
  • Keep your eyes on the road: Resist the temptation to look at the examiner and what he or she is writing. You will not be able to deduce anything anyway. Keep your attention on your driving, and the road ahead!


If you have any queries about your driving test please Contact Us, we always have a fully qualified driving instructor to hand.

To book your driving practical test, or for more information click on the link below

Good Luck!