The 2017 changes to the test saw the sharpest decline in pass rates for the practical driving test. We believe that if you’re fully prepared, you stand a much better chance of passing, so here is our guide as to what to expect.
There are 5 parts to your driving test:
- An eyesight check
- ‘Show me, tell me’ safety questions
- General driving ability
- Reversing your vehicle
- Independent driving
The test is around 40 minutes long for both automatic and manual cars.
You will need to read a number plate at a distance of 20 metres for new style number plates and 20.5 metres for old style number plates. This is crucial: if you fail your eye check, then you will fail the test, so remember to bring your glasses or contacts if you need them for driving.
‘Show me, tell me’ vehicle safety questions
‘Tell me’ questions will be at the start of your test before you drive and will involve you explaining to the examiner how something works.
‘Show me’ questions will happen while you’re driving, and involve you showing the examiner how to perform a task or where a part of the car is.
General driving ability
To assess your general driving ability, you will need to drive in various conditions and on different road types, except motorways.
You will need to demonstrate you can pull over and pull away during your test by doing one or more of the following:
- Normal stops at the side of the road
- Pulling out from behind a parked vehicle
- A hill start
- Emergency stop
Reversing your vehicle
You will demonstrate this through one of the following exercises:
- Parallel parking at the side of the road
- Parking in a parking bay
- Pull up on the right-hand side of the road, reverse for around 2 car lengths, and rejoin traffic
By either following the sat nav or traffic signs, you will have to drive through your own decision making for 10 to 20 minutes to reach a destination.