If you’re going to take your driving test in the near future, then you’re probably a little nervous about the prospect, but you really don’t need to be. A driving test is no different from any other test and as long as you know your stuff and you have had enough practice, you shouldn’t have any real problems. However, there are certainly some things you can do to improve your chances, so here are six ways to make sure that you pass your driving test the first time.
1. Make Sure You Know Your Stuff
Let’s start with the most obvious stuff because it’s important. You need to know your stuff and you need to know it well. There are four parts to the test:
- The theory test
- The hazard perception test
- The driving test
- Show me, tell me
It goes without saying that you need to know everything you can about the theory part of the test and it is maybe even more important that you are properly prepared for the hazard perception part of the test. Make sure you download one of the numerous apps available for both the Highway Code and the hazard perception test.
While you may feel that these two tests are overly difficult, they are not. You need to know your Highway Code inside and out because if you don’t, forgetting the test for a moment, the penalties can be severe if you make a mistake. And the hazard perception is just as important because it teaches you how to recognise potential dangers on the road. That could save your life one day.
2. Be Properly Prepared for the Big Day
As with any big event, you need to make sure you’re mentally and physically prepared for your driving test. If your test is in the morning, get up nice and early so that you don’t turn up for your test half-asleep. Be sure to have breakfast as you don’t want to be thinking about your stomach half-way through your test. Plus, eating will mean that you have the energy to do a good job on your test.
Get to the test nice and early. For the theory part of the test, you need to be there 30 minutes before it starts and you need to remember your provisional driving license. You get a break between the two tests, so if you think you’ll need an energy snack to get your brain going again, bring some along. Plus a flask for a drink or some coffee may be a good idea too.
3. Take As Many Lessons As You Need
Passing your driving test is not a competition with your friends to see who can do it first. Some people have a natural aptitude for driving. Some can pick it up pretty quickly while others need a bit more time to get everything right. The point here is to take as many lessons as you need and don’t rush to take your test. When your instructor says you’re ready, then you should take your test, not before.
Of course, you may not be able to take lots of driving lessons. For a start, driving lessons are not cheap and you may not have the funds to take as many as you’d like. You may live somewhere a bit off the beaten track and getting to your driving lesson or getting an instructor to come to you may be difficult. In that case, you could pay for a driving simulator. It may not be exactly the same as driving a car but it’s a great option if your choices are limited.
4. Don’t Let Your Nerves Get the Better of You
Remember that you are allowed a few minor mistakes, 15 to be exact. Considering that your test is about 40 minutes long, and that includes the ‘show me, tell me’ part, that’s around one mistake every two to three minutes or so. That’s quite a few mistakes so don’t panic if you make one or two minor mistakes.
You are also allowed one major mistake. Obviously, you really don’t want to make any major mistakes but if do, don’t panic. Even if you do make a big mistake, how you deal with it is often just as important as what you did. If you keep calm, manage the situation well, and keep driving in a responsible manner, then that major problem may not be as big as you thought.
5. You’re Allowed to Choose Your Own Test Centre
This is a great piece of advice because many people don’t think about doing it but they really should. Try and imagine you have a choice of a test centre in a large urban area with lots of traffic, roundabouts and junctions, and traffic lights or a test centre in a rural part of the country. Which one should you choose?
Of course, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t know how to deal with things like roundabouts and busy junctions but that doesn’t mean you have to deal with them during your driving test. Of course, you may not be able to do this but if you can, you’re certainly allowed to.
6. Make Sure You Practise in All Weather Conditions
Your test will not be cancelled just because the weather is bad so practise in as many different weather conditions as you can. If you plan to do your test in the summer months you will be unlikely to get really bad weather so it may pay you to wait until the end of spring before you book a test.
Of course, actually trying to plan to have a lesson during bad weather is not that easy, even in a country with as changeable weather as the UK. Still, keep an eye on the weather forecast and if there is a week of terrible weather predicted, book a lesson for then.
Wrapping It All Up
And there you have it. Remember that your driving test is no different from any other test. If you prepare well, know your stuff, and keep calm during the actual test, there is no reason at all that you won’t pass the first time.