That sweet, sweet taste of freedom is only around the corner if you can just get through the next 40 minutes without making any serious mistakes. Your speeding your way down a country lane only to end up at a two-lane roundabout that you’re not familiar with. The examiner asks you to come off at the second exit which is just straight ahead so you make your way over into the left lane.
You prepare yourself to set off just as the last car is coming around the roundabout. But wait, what does that sign say? Left lane for first exit only…?
Oh no! You’re in the wrong lane!
You feel the panic start to bubble up inside of you as your breath starts quickening. The blood rushes to your head as you realise that you have never prepared for this situation before! What do you do?
You sit there racking your brains on all the knowledge you have acquired over the span of lessons you have had. Yet you still sit there hesitating to move in case you get it wrong and fail. After what feels like an eternity, the examiner speaks up and guides you on what to do.
The relief washes over you as you finally make your way back to the test centre, but that feeling doesn’t last for long. Your heart drops when you hear the results of your test.
It’s incredibly frustrating when you fail a driving test not to mention how disappointing it is when you realise you won’t be getting back that hard-earned money you spent on it. That’s why you should take a look at this list of tips to help you pass your driving test.
1. Practice Makes Perfect
You should already know that you need to practice before taking any test, but a lot of people have a few lessons then decide they are ready. This is not the way to go about it. Yes, you may be able to operate the car with only a few lessons practice, but that does not mean you know the rules of the road. Things like giving way to the right, forward and reverse hill starts, spatial awareness and manoeuvres such as three-point turns, and bay parking are all things that you need to be able to demonstrate when you’re on your test. The DVLA says that the recommended number of hours you need of practice is 44 with a driving instructor and 22 with family or friends.
2. Show Me Tell Me
When you take the test, you are going to be asked two questions; one of which will be a ‘show me’ question, and the other will be a ‘tell me’ question. There is a list of these questions which you can find on the DVLA website. There are 14 ‘tell me’ questions and 7 ‘show me’ questions, you should memorise these and all the answers to them before you take the test. On the day of the test, run through them with a friend or family member and get them to read out each question for you to answer. If you have access to a car, it would also be a good idea to open up the bonnet and have a look inside it. There are some questions on the ‘show me’ part that will require you to open your car bonnet and show the examiner where a certain part is and what it does.
3. Use Your Instructors Car
Your instructor’s car will be kitted out with all the proper equipment. For instance, you will need a mirror on the passenger side so the examiner can see through the back window. Your instructor’s car will also have enough petrol in it to get you through the 40 minutes you will be driving. Examiners can fail you if they see that the car does not have enough air in the tires. If you have done more practice in your instructors’ car, you should do your test in it as you will be more familiar with it.
4. Don’t Assume You Have Failed
Unless you’re incredibly lucky and extremely good at driving when you take your test, you are going to get minors. It can be scary when you see the examiner writing down on their sheet of paper and it is easy to think that they are striking you down for minors. However, a lot of the time, they will only be writing down what things you have done on the test so that the examiner remembers. Try not to get too anxious when you see them writing and just focus on driving. Getting anxious will stop you from concentrating on the road and will cause you to make mistakes.
5. Exaggerate Those Mirror Checks
In the real world of driving, you don’t have to turn your head to look into your mirrors; all that’s needed is a quick glance with the eyes. However, the driving examiner must be able to see that you are using your mirrors, so you need to make sure that you are overexaggerating. Remember that every time you signal to go left or right, you need to check the rear-view mirror and then either the left or right-wing mirror depending on which way you are turning. When you have completed the turn, check the rear-view mirror again. You should know that you must be checking your rear-view mirror every 6 seconds. It’s incredibly easy to forget to check your mirrors but you only get to make three mistakes in the observation section; if you make any more than that, you will fail.
Remember to stay calm and stay focused. Don’t let anything that is going on around you affect your driving as this could cause you to make mistakes. It will be the quickest 40 minutes of your life so try not to worry about it too much.