Practical driving test

Tips for taking your practical driving test

So you're almost there. You’ve had your lessons, you’vepassed your theory test, and now the only thing between you and the open road is the practical test. Read on for a run-through of everything you need to get your practical test booked, prepared for, and (fingers crossed) passed.

Driving test

Why do I need to take the practical driving test?


  • Demonstrate safe, independent driving in a variety of road and traffic conditions.
  • Show a working knowledge of the Highway Code.

When can I take my practical driving test?

You can book your practical driving test if you're at least 17, have a valid provisional licence, and you've passed your theory test. Once you've passed the driving theory test you’ll receive a pass certificate number, which lasts 2 years. Make sure you pass your practical within this time, or you’ll have to take and pass the theory test again.


Your driving instructor will let you know when they think you've got the potential to pass your test and they'll discuss suitable dates for you to have a go. But if you feel confident in your abilities, talk to your instructor so they're aware.

How is coronavirus affecting practical driving tests?

Practical driving tests have resumed in England , Wales and Scotland.


  • You or someone you live with has coronavirus symptoms.
  • NHS测试和跟踪服务让您知道您已经与患有冠状病毒的人保持联系。
  • You're still in the isolation period from recent travels abroad.

If you're in England and you don't have coronavirus symptoms, the government recommends参加COVID -19快速横向流程测试在进行实际驾驶测试之前。

You can still take your practical test without getting a rapid lateral flow test, but it's not advisable.

There are new measures in place on the day to keep you safe from the coronavirus.


Some test centres' waiting rooms will be closed, although access to toilets will remain open.

Check if your test centre waiting room will be open

You'll need to clean the inside of your car before your test, including wiping down any surfaces. Your examiner may want to wipe down surfaces as well.

阅读适当的安全措施以保护您在gov.uk页面上。This will be updated with new information from the government.

How do I prepare for my practical driving test?

如果this is your first time taking the test, here's how to make sure you're in the best possible position to pass:

  • 在接受测试之前,请确保您准备好了。不要只是因为想要许可证而匆匆忙忙。
  • 公路代码
  • Practice your skills and manoeuvres as much as you can.
  • 请您的教练花一些额外的时间在您不确定的任何事情上。
  • Visit the test centre beforehand so you're familiar with the journey and your surroundings.
  • If you know you'll be nervous, try to book your test in the morning so you can get it over and done with.
  • 测试前一天,照顾好自己。尝试进行一些锻炼,避免外出,并获得足够的睡眠。
  • A few hours before your test, limit your screen time so you can minimise distractions.


What do I need to take to my driving test?

The test will take place at your local test centre. On the day, make sure you take:

  • Your provisional UK driving licence.
  • 您的理论通过证书。
  • A car – most pupils will use their instructors' car, but you can use your own too.
  • 参加测试时,必须戴脸部盖。如果您不穿衣服,则需要在预订时让他们知道,否则您的测试将被取消。


如果你没有一个照片卡执照,你需要to take your paper licence and a valid passport. If you don’t have your theory test certificate, get in touch with the DVSA well in advance, or the Driver & Vehicle Agency (DVA) in Northern Ireland. If you give them your name and driving licence number, they'll send you a letter which will allow you to take the test.



1. The eyesight check

First of all, the examiner will check that your eyesight’s good enough to drive. So don’t forget your glasses if you need them.

You’ll be asked to read a number plate from 20 metres away, which is roughly the length of 5 cars. If you can’t read the plate you’ve failed the test and it ends there.

2. ‘Show me, tell me’ safety questions

You’ll be asked 2 vehicle safety questions by the examiner, known as ‘show me, tell me’. This is to show you know how to perform basic safety checks.

The ‘tell me’ question will require you to explain how you’d carry out a certain activity - for example, how to open the bonnet and check there’s sufficient oil in the engine, or where to find the recommended tyre pressures, and how to check the pressure. There are 14 possible ‘tell me’ questions.

对于“向我展示”问题,您需要演示如何进行一项活动 - 例如,清洗和清洁后挡风玻璃或发出喇叭声。有7个可能的“向我展示问题”。

您可以阅读完整的列表‘show me, tell me’ questions on GOV.UK

3. General driving ability


  • 拉走,例如从停放的汽车后面。

  • Pull over, usually at the side of the road.

  • Perform ahill start.

  • Perform an紧急停车- 在被要求这样做之前,您会提前警告。

There are some things you won’t be expected to do on your test, such as motorway driving.

4. Reversing the vehicle

To test your reversing ability, the examiner will ask you to do one of these:

  • Park in a parking bay。您将被要求逆转并开车出去,或者开车进去。

  • Parallel park。This will be performed at the side of the road by at least one parked car.

  • Reverse for around two car lengths。For this, you pull up on the right-hand side of the road. Once you’ve completed the manoeuvre, you’ll be asked to rejoin the traffic.

5. Independent driving

This section of the test is to show you can follow directions from a sat nav, traffic signs, or both - rather than from the examiner. If you’re following a sat nav, the examiner will set it up for you.Although the examiner won’t ask you anything during this part of the test, you can ask them questions.

There are times the examiner might step in, for example, if you take a wrong turn or you can’t read an obstructed sign.如果the examiner has to give directions, don’t interpret this as having failed or being marked down. Going off-route won’t necessarily affect your test result.

How is the practical driving test scored?

Unlike most tests, the perfect score here is zero. The examiner marks you for each fault you make. You won’t generally be told what faults you’ve made during the test, and won’t know your result until the test is complete.


  • Adriving fault, also known as a次要的。These aren’t dangerous faults, and won’t necessarily cause you to fail - unless you get more than 15 minors. Or if you keep making the same mistake, that can become a serious fault - which is also a fail.

  • Aserious fault, also known as amajor。These are errors which could be dangerous. Just one serious fault means you’ve failed, but you’ll still carry on with the test.

  • A危险的故障means you’ve put yourself, the examiner, the public and/or property in actual danger. This is not only an instant fail, but the test will end there. Keeping everyone safe is the examiner’s number one priority.

How might I fail my practical driving test?

根据DVSA, the pass rate in 2018/19 was just 45.8%. The top 10 most common mistakes leading to a failed test are:

  • Observation at junctions。If you don’t look properly while pulling out at a junction, or exercise poor judgement while emerging into the path of traffic, then you’ve committed the fault responsible for most test failures.

  • 镜子的使用不当。You could fail if you don’t look in your mirrors while manoeuvring or changing direction, or if you do it too late.

  • 转向控制。Where you lack control, or fail to maintain the right course. Keep both hands on the wheel as much as possible.

  • 连接处的位置不正确。Most commonly cutting corners while turning right.

  • Not moving away safely。这可能是由于没有检查您的盲点或未表明的原因而引起的。

  • Response to traffic signals。If you don’t respond to traffic lights correctly, such as running an amber light, or stopping on the section designated for cyclists.

  • Poor control while moving off。例如,如果您向后滚动,或者将手动刹车保持原状。

  • Incorrect positioning while driving normally。Make sure you’re in the middle of the marked lane. Learner drivers are often caught out by cutting corners or veering across lanes at roundabouts.

  • 对道路标记的回应。Always be aware of road markings. For example, don’t enter a box junction unless your exit is clear.

  • 反向停车时缺乏控制。Don’t perform this manoeuvre too quickly or recklessly. Take your time, and keep checking your mirrors.

我带着别人吗e driving test?

The rules have changed because of the coronavirus, you are no longer allowed your driving instructor or a supervising driver to sit in the back during your test.

How will I know if I’ve passed the practical test?

Unless the test has been stopped prematurely, your examiner will direct you back to the test centre. When you’ve parked up, they’ll tell you your test result and give you feedback.

If you have 15 minors or fewer, and no serious or dangerous faults, then congratulations - you’ve passed! You'll receive a pass certificate and be asked if you’d like your licence sent to you automatically. Otherwise you have 2 years to apply for one.

If you’ve failed don't be too downhearted. You can try again - just be sure to listen to the examiner’s feedback, as this will stand you in good stead for the next test.