The interactive website that partners The Car and Motorcycle Theory Test book

The Day of the Test

Driving Test CentreYour instructor will provide you with a lot of support and encouragement leading up to your test date. It is important to approach the exam in a positive frame of mind; worrying about potential scenarios and outcomes may only destroy your confidence and affect your performance on the day.

On the day of your test please ensure you bring the following;

  • an appropriately insured and licensed vehicle, displaying L- Plates (except for taxi and Approved Driving Instructor (ADI) part 2 tests), that is suitable for the purpose of the test
  • the appropriate theory test pass certificate (or confirmation) if you are not exempt
     your appointment letter
  • both parts of your photo card licence. If you do not take both parts of your licence your test will not take place and you will lose your fee
  • if you have an old-style paper licence, you must take your signed driver licence and a valid passport - from 1 November 2005 no other form of photographic identification will be accepted
  • for a motorcycle test please remember to take your CBT certificate as well

If you misplace your licence, you must apply for a replacement from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA), which could take up to 15 days. If this happens, you may have to rearrange your test.

When reporting for your driving test try to turn up 5 or 10 minutes early. There will be a waiting room at the test centre, and once the examiner is ready he will come out and call your name. Whilst he checks your documents he will ask you to sign a declaration regarding the vehicle you are using for your test and insurance cover. If everything is in order the examiner will ask you to lead the way to your vehicle and your practical driving test begins.

The UK driving test is extensive, but listed below are some of the areas that will be covered during your exam;

  • eyesight check by asking you to read a number plate at the prescribed distance
  • basic vehicle maintenance checks will be examined in the ‘Show Me, Tell Me’ element.
  • Moving away and stopping
  • Using mirrors and signalling
  • Safe positioning
  • Anticipation and planning
  • Appropriate use of speed
  • Junctions and roundabouts
  • Pedestrian crossings
  • The manoeuvres which may include the turn in the road, reversing around a corner, reversing into a parking bay, reverse parking, the emergency stop

The examiner will give you clear and concise instructions in good time throughout the entire test. He will often ask you to park appropriately before he gives you any detailed instructions. If you do not understand anything ask him/her to explain again. However, in general, your examiner will not make conversation or small talk during your test – he is not being rude but merely wants to allow you to concentrate on driving.

In general the test will last around 40 minutes. To pass you must avoid making any serious or dangerous faults and must avoid making no more than 15 driving faults. The examiner will mark any faults that you have made on a Driving Test Report form. At the end of the test he will tell you whether you have passed or failed and will explain the faults he has marked on the report. He will then provide you with a copy of the report and a pass certificate if you were successful or an application form for another test if you failed.

If you have failed discuss the test and the Driving Test Report with your instructor. He will be able to explain in more detail what the various categories and marks mean. Try not to be too disheartened by the result - regard the test as part of the learning process and use the report as a basis for your future lessons.

If you have passed…congratulations! You will now be eligible to apply for a full car licence. However, please remember that you are still a very inexperienced driver and far more likely to be involved in an accident in your first year on the road – a fact that will be reflected in the insurance premiums you will pay.