There are precious few times more tumultuous in our lives than when we’re learning to drive for the first (or maybe second or third) time. Whereas our parents had relatively little to contend with as far as the test was concerned, driving tests today are not as easy as some would have you believe. Indeed, it’s quite common for many first timers to fail their first couple of times.
This does two things – your confidence takes a hit and it costs you a lot of money. Driving tests don’t come cheap and a bad test could knock months off your progress. So, before you start excitedly start searching for cars to lease online, let’s take a step back and examine what you need to keep in mind if you want to pass your driving test the first and only time.
Find the right instructor
You’ll probably ask everyone you know who they learned with and most of them are probably going to swear by “their guy” or “their girl.” But the truth is, different instructors will work best for different people. We all learn in a different way and respond differently to a variety of learning methods. What works for one person isn’t necessarily going to work for another so do your research and look for the right instructor for you.
Practice makes perfect
A surprising number of new drivers will get overly confident after a few lessons and feel as if the world is their proverbial oyster. As a rule, however, you’ll want to have at least a good dozen or so proper lessons as well as some time behind the wheel with an experienced driver before taking your test. You might be a natural driver but there are so many rules and tricks to learn. Remember, you’re not only learning to drive; you’re learning to pass a test! Practice driving routesand manoeuvres before your test too. Good instructors will ask what you’d like to practice in the run-up to your test, so this is a good opportunity to drive routes you’re not overly familiar with and tackle trickier manoeuvres.
Ask lots of questions
Practice ‘show me tell me’ questions the examiner may ask, such as under the bonnet, “where does the engine oil go?” or “How do I check the brake lights are working?” You shouldn’t worry about feeling silly or like the answers to the questions you’re asking should be obvious. The instructor is there for a reason and if you’re unsure about something, it’s your responsibility to ask and their duty to give you the answers you need.
More mistakes get made in haste than at leisure. Everyone learns at their own speed so don’t try to rush it. You’ll be ready when you’re ready. A lot of people will tell you that driving will just “click” for you at some point and there is certainly wisdom in that. So, keep calm, enjoy the process and good luck!
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