The Driving Test

Life may not be perfect – but you’re driving could be!

At Coastline the emphasis is on safe driving, not the test or test routes – saying that we do have to spend a bit of time going through what is done on the test, how it’s done and what you should do if something should happen during the drive.

Am I ready for the test?

There are a few simple steps you can honestly ask yourself – do you still get prompts / guides or any talk through from your instructor? Do you still feel stressed when driving?  Do you still get clammy hands?  Do you still get a warm back when driving?  Being honest – If the answer is yes – then you may not be quite ready to drive safely after the test – BUT it may be time to consider booking your test for a date in the future – something to aim for.  But please discuss it with your instructor. *Please see notes at bottom of the page!

I want to book my test!

That’s great – most Coastline instructors will book your practical driving test for you, at no extra cost.  But if you want to book your test, and use your instructors car – PLEASE discuss with them first – ensuring when they are available, DO NOT book a short notice test.  Go directly to the DVSA website and do not use test cancellation websites – book your test HERE (If your instructor books your test for you then you MUST PAY for that either before they book or on the next lesson).  *Please see notes at bottom of the page!

Will I use my instructor’s car for the test?

Yes, if you want to.  If you prefer to use your own car that’s totally fine as well.  We are here to support you, so if you prefer your car then go for it!  Regardless of using your car or your instructors car – if your instructor accompanies you, then their time is still chargeable, the amount depends on a few things, but normally in the region of 2 hours charge should be budgeted for.  If using your car – you will need to check that you are still insured when you pass, your instructor will normally drive home – so insure they are covered as well – but speak to your instructor to go through the full requirements about cars and test. *Please see notes at bottom of the page!

Questions about the test!

  • How long will my test last?

A normal test will last between 38 and 40 minutes – BUT that does not allow for extra traffic because of events happening in your area or accidents excetra – I have known a test last 105 minutes (YES! 1 and 3/4 hours – oh, she passed by the way).

  • My friend said they got stuck in traffic and only did a short drive!

All pupils have a ROUTE to complete, the only way that will not happen is if a road is closed and they have to take a diversion, the pupil or examiner terminates the test (usually means a walk back to the test centre!) or the car develops a problem – but all tests MUST show your ability to drive on different roads and different traffic situations – what you find is that the 40 minutes go so fast they forget most of the drive because usually it is uneventful because they can drive!

  • My Examiner failed me!

When you hear your friends say that – just think – why?  What do the DVSA  gain? How do they work out who to pass and who to fail? If they (the DVSA) have to pass say 4 people a day and they pass the first 4 and their drive was poor but the next 4 had a great drive – do you believe the MUST fail them?  Unfortunately NO, the examiner did not fail them, they did something wrong – and yes, in their eyes that may not be serious, but that, one day, could result in a getting a ticket of some description or be involved in a accident because of it.  When you did your exams at school – you got the grade – the examiners only marked it.. It’s exactly the same!

  • My instructor won’t let me book a test, I think they are just taking my money!

At Coastline one way we can put this across is we DON’T increase your lesson prices – SO – if you are thinking that just ask why would we if we could charge more taking on a new pupil because of lesson price increase? *This only applies if you have regular lessons.

  • Why am I paying £62 and you money as well?

The £62 goes straight to the Government – the people who will test you.  On top of that you still have to pay your instructor for their time as you would on a normal lesson.

  • How does the test go?

Your instructor will go through this in greater detail – BUT basically you will be picked up in good time and go for a drive, I always check that you HAVE your licence on you! We will go through the Show Me – Tell Me questions and answers and just carry out all the maneuvers that we have been practicing during your lessons.  We will get to the test centre and reverse bay park, so the car is facing the correct way.  We then go to the waiting room.  There are toilet facilities there should you need them. 

The examiner will call your name, they will ask you to sign the test sheet (Sign this the same way you signed your provisional licence).  The examiner will then check that:

  • You still live at the address that is on your licence.
  • Would you like your instructor to accompany you? (this should be discussed so you know before you are in the waiting room)
  • Would you like your instructor to listen to the debrief at the end of the test?

You will then leave the waiting room and on the way to the car you will have to read a number plate at approx. 20.5 metres away.  You will then be asked to either open the bonnet or take a seat in the car – if it’s sit in the car – put your seat belt on, re check the mirrors and DO NOT START THE CAR!

Once at the car, the examiner will walk around the car basically a visual check on the tyres and condition of the car / lights / number plates and L plates.

When they get in they will take some details from our DVSA ADI Licence (that Green or Pink card placed on the windscreen).

They will possibly set up the Sat Nav (you do not have to do any setting up, just make sure you can SEE IT and HEAR IT! Also ensure the display is suitable – the same way you are used to it being.

The rest should be just like a driving lesson with someone else sitting next to you, follow their instructions as you do your instructors.  Don’t do anything differently – like “drive slower” to be safe – if we wanted you to drive slower – we would have discussed that in your lesson.  This is nothing different to what you should be doing after you have passed!

At the end of the test your examiner will direct you to where they would like you to stop the car, secure the car as normal and switch off. This is the end of the test! – AND RELAX!

If your instructor is listening to the debrief – they will approach the car now.

Your examiner will then complete the test marking sheet and say – CONGRATULATIONS I’M PLEASED TO SAY YOU’VE PASSED!

Can I see your licence again.  They will then go through the marking sheet with some helpful advice.  They will then get you to sign at the bottom of the marking sheet to confirm that your health has not changed – they will ask you if you would like them to apply for your licence for you?  Why not – unless you like filling in forms. They will mention PASS PLUS – which all instructors would recommend – what will we teach you on Pass Plus? Nothing – but you will learn a lot!

If something did not go to plan during the test your examiner will say –    SORRY TO SAY YOU’VE NOT BEEN SUCCESSFUL THIS TIME!

They will discuss the issues that occurred – We know how frustrating this can be, but don’t give up!  You have come a long way – just need to tackle that final hurdle!

  • Your instructor will refuse the use of their car if they feel you are not at test standard, please respect this decision as it is their livelihood, their income – their business you would be taking.

Don’t delay – Contact us today!

Phone 07930 310839 for more details or EMAIL