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Tips for the driving test



  • Keep reading the Highway Code, a thorough understanding of the rules of the road is essential.

  • Read the sections on hand signals. You should know how to give them, and you could come across a police officer controlling traffic. Remember cyclists and horse riders also use hand signals. 

  • Drive with confidence, try to relax and let the drive flow.

  • Use all the controls smoothly and progressively.

  • Make progress when safe, however when not safe control your speed as appropriate.

  • Keep your eyes moving, use all the mirrors effectively, 360 degrees awareness all of the time.

  • Check blind spots before moving off and on the manoeuvres. Check also on the move before changing lanes, overtaking, leaving a roundabout and before joining a dual carriageway or motorway from a slip road.

  • Look mainly in the direction of travel when reversing, use the mirrors but don’t just reverse in them. 

  • Anticipate the unexpected, keep asking yourself what if and don’t let anything take you by surprise.

  • Look for and take note of all road signs and markings they are there to help.

  • Look for and respond smoothly to changes in the speed limit. Remember the speed limit often changes as you leave or enter a built up area and at a junction.

  • Look for temporary signs at road works which over rule the usual signs.

  • Be very cautious at a traffic light controlled junction if the lights are out of order. Treat like an unmarked junction and proceed with caution.

  • Be cautious when your view around a pedestrian crossing is restricted and anticipate pedestrians stepping into the road.

  • Give long vehicles plenty of room especially at a junction. See Highway Code rule 170, 187 and 221.

  • Give vulnerable road users such as cyclists, mobility scooters and horse riders plenty of room. Read the relevant sections of the Highway Code concerning these road users to give yourself a better understanding of how vulnerable they are. 

  • Ask the examiner to repeat any instruction if you don’t understand or if you have forgotten what has been said. 


  • Keep reading the section in the Highway Code on waiting and parking (page 80). You will be asked to pull up several times during the test so it’s very important you know the rules.




  • Dwell on any mistake you make, forget about it and carry on with the drive.

  • Lose heart if the drive isn’t going well, remember you’re allowed to make 15 minor errors.

  • Take any notice of what the examiner is doing, just concentrate on the drive. 


  • Worry if you go the wrong way or find yourself in the wrong lane, just go the wrong way safely.

  • Do anything different on the test to what you would normally do on a lesson.

  • Worry if another road user makes a mistake or does something stupid, just respond in a safe manner.

  • Fail yourself during the drive, let the examiner make that decision.

  • Give up until your back at the test centre, parked up with the engine turned off.

  • Block access into or out of a junction in queuing traffic.

  • Stop on a pedestrian crossing or where it says keep clear on the road in queuing traffic.

  • Be intimidated by the bad behaviour of other road users.

  • Allow any following vehicle to push you into driving faster then what you think is safe.

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