Practical Test

Below we have provided information about the Practical Test with things you need to know before you take that Practical Test and what the Driving Practical Test involves.

About The Practical Test

The purpose of the Driving Practical Test is to find out whether you can drive safely without supervision on the roads. You will not pass the test unless you can show the examiner that you have the ability to do this. When you have passed your Theory Test you should discuss with your instructor about when you should apply for a Practical Test.

The Practical Driving Test is relatively straightforward. It lasts approximately 40 minutes and is conducted from your local driving test centre by a DSA examiner. Test routes are designed to be as uniformed as possible and include a range of typical road and traffic conditions. We can help with your practical test application.

The driving test can be broken down into 3 areas including the new Independant Driving section:

Before The Practical Test Starts

You need to ensure that you have BOTH parts of your new style licence and Theory Test Cert. If you have an old style licence it needs to be signed (new licences already have the signature on the photocard part).

If you have a full driving licence which was issued in another country but isn’t eligible for exchange for a GB Licence, you must apply for, and bring with you, a GB provisional licence. Your examiner will not be able to conduct the test if you can’t produce one of these licences. All documents must be original – DSA can’t accept photocopies. If your licence does not show your photograph you must also bring with you a form of photographic identification. For this your examiner will accept a valid passport.

Before you enter your vehicle the examiner will give you an eye test. You must prove to the examiner that, in good daylight, you are able to read an old style number plate at 20.5 metres and a new style number plate at 20 metres. You may wear glasses or contact lenses to read the number plate, however you must ensure you always wear them when you are driving in the future.

Practical Test Questions & Answers

Vehicle safety checks have always been part of the officially recommended syllabus for learning to drive. To see a list of the combinations of questions that may be used click on the Questions & Answers link. Each combination of questions contains two questions and answers.

Practical Test On The Road

The examiner will take you on a pre-selected test route and you will be assessed on a number of different skills. For details of what these requirements are click on the Driving Skills link.

You will also be required to show the ability to complete one reversing manoeuvre. For details and diagrams of the possible manoeuvres click on the Driving Manoeuvres link.

Independent Driving

Your practical driving test will also now include a section of ‘independent driving’. In the independent driving section of your test, you will drive for about 10 minutes without step-by-step direction from your examiner. At present, examiners give candidates step-by-step instructions during the test. For other parts of the test, this will still be true. But during the independent driving section of the test, the examiner will ask you to drive by either following a series of directions, following traffic signs, or a combination of both.

To help you understand where you’re going, the examiner may show you a diagram. It doesn’t matter if you don’t remember every direction, or if you go the wrong way – that can happen to the most experienced drivers. Independent driving is not a test of your orientation and navigation skills. Driving independently means making your own decisions – this includes deciding when it’s safe and appropriate to ask for confirmation about where you’re going. If you ask for a reminder of the directions, the examiner will confirm them to you. If you go off the independent driving route it won’t affect the result of your test unless you commit a driving fault. If you go off the route or take a wrong turning, the examiner will help you to get back on the route and continue with the independent driving. If there are poor or obscured traffic signs, the examiner will give you directions until you can see the next traffic sign – you won’t need to have a detailed knowledge of the area.

You can’t use a sat nav for independent driving as it gives you turn-by-turn prompts. Independent driving tests how you make your own decisions.

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