The driving test is about 40 mins long. During this time the examiner will :
1. Check your eyesight by getting you to read a number plate at the required distance.
2. Ask you to show and tell them how to carry out certain vehicle safety checks.
3. Direct you around a given test route while carrying out 1 of the following manoeuvres.
- Reverse parking behind a parked car.
- Reverse parking into a parking bay.
- Driving forwards into a parking bay and reversing out.
- Pull up on the right hand side of the road, reverse a short distance and then drive away.
Aswell as one of the above you may also be asked to carry out the Emergency Stop exercise
At the start of the driving test you must demonstrate to the examiner that your eyesight meets the legal minimum distance to drive a car. This is done by reading a number plate at the required distance of 20 metres. (20.5 metres if reading an older style number plate).
If you need glasses or contact lenses to read this number plate, you will be required to wear them whenever you are driving.
If you are unable to read a number plate at the exact distance you will FAIL the driving test and the test will go no further.
After your eyesight part of the test the examiner will ask you which is your car, then he/she will ask you 1 tell me question BEFORE you start driving. Later in the test you will be asked 1 show me question, usually WHILE you are driving.
A full list of the TELL ME questions can be found here.
or here for the full list SHOW ME questions.
During the driving part of the test the examiner will ask you to drive around a set route with a variety of different road and traffic conditions. The examiner will tell you in good time which way to go. If you go the wrong way dont panic the examiner is testing your ability to drive not your ability to follow directions. It is better to go the wrong way correctly than go the right way incorrectly.
If at anytime you are unsure what the examiner requires you to do, do not hessiste to ask., the examiner appreciates that you may be nervous and will be happy to repeat or clarify any given instructions.
As you are driving around on the test, the examiner will note any driving faults you commit, under the approriate box on the driving test report.(see here).
The faults are categorised into minor driving faults, serious driving faults and dangerous driving faults.
At the end of the test the examiner will total up the faults to give the overall test result.
You are allowed to commit upto 15 minor driving faults, if you commit 16 or more you will unfortunately fail the test. ALSO if you commit 1 or more Serious or Dangerous fault you will also have failed the test.
Even if you think you have failed please try to contuine to do your best, as this will help you identify where you need more practise for your next test.