Practical Driving Test

The practical test lasts around 40 minutes and includes all types of roads. You will be asked to carry out one reverse manoeuvre and possibly the emergency stop. You will also be asked to drive independently for 20 minutes following road signs or follow a SAT NAV. You will usually have an hour lesson before your test so that you can practice before your test. About ten minutes before your test starts you will arrive at the test centre and wait for the examiner to call your name. You will be asked to sign a residency declaration and then you will be asked to lead the way to the car (you will take your test in the same car that you learned in). The examiner will ask you to read a number plate at the prescribed distance . When you arrive at the car you will be asked one question about the general maintenance of the car these are called ‘SHOW ME TELL ME’ questions. A complete list of these questions are listed on a printable page , please go to the’ SHOW ME TELL ME’  page.

Before you start the test the examiner will adjust his/ her seat and write down some details on a form. the examiner will then ask you if you would like to know what will happen on the test. This is because some candidates have already taken a test and know the format. The examiner will ask you to follow the road ahead at all times unless told otherwise. You must understand that examiners task is to see if you are safe and that you abide by the highway code . The examiner is not there to give advise or to help you in anyway. Nowadays examiners will try to make you feel as relaxed as they can and they are not there to trick you, so if you hear any rumours about the test IGNORE THEM! the examiner will ask you to carry out all the skills listed in your track record. You will be asked to carry out one out of these four manoeuvres:

  • Forward bay park
  • Drive to opposite side and reverse then drive back to the correct side of the road
  • Parallel park
  • Bay park

The examiner has to observe an EMERGENCY STOP every third test in sequence. When you arrive back at the test centre the examiner will ask you to turn off the engine. At this point the examiner must check and re check the marks on the test sheet. After this he/ she will give you your result. If you have less than 16 driving faults and no serious or dangerous faults you will pass the test.The examiner will present you with a form which you should keep in your car until your new FULL licence arrives in the post. If you fail the examiner will explain why you have failed and you will have to wait ten working days until you can take another test. Pass or Fail the examiner will give a thorough debrief so that you can improve the weak parts of your drive.

It is important to note that the examiners understand that you will feel nervous and there job is to make sure you are safe and abide by the highway code