Prepare for a practical driving test

The practical part of the driving test is designed to see if you can drive safely, execute certain driving manoeuvres, and apply the knowledge of the Highway Code and skills learned in your theory test to a practical driving situation.

There are 5 parts to the practical driving test. These are explained in more detail below.

Eyesight check

You will be asked to read a number plate from a distance of 20 metres. If you fail the eyesight check, you fail the driving test, and the test will end there.

Show Me, Tell Me

You will be asked 2 vehicle safety questions that are designed to show that you know how to carry out basic safety checks. You can find more information about the questions on our show me, tell me page.

Driving Ability

The examiner will ask you to drive on various roads in a variety of traffic conditions. You won’t be asked to drive on a motorway. You will have to follow the examiner’s directions to demonstrate your independent driving. You will also have to pull over to the side of the road to show your ability to do manoeuvres including hill starts and pulling out from behind a parked vehicle. You may be asked to carry out an emergency stop.

Manoeuvres

The examiner will ask you to complete one of the following manoeuvres:

  • Reversing round a corner
  • Turning in the road (commonly known as the 3 point turn)
  • Reverse parking (either into a parking bay or parallel parking at the side of the road)

Independent Driving

The final section of the test is independent driving. This part should take around 10 minutes. You will be asked to follow either road signs, verbal directions, or a combination of the two.

If you can’t see a road sign for any reason, your examiner will direct you until you can see the next sign. Don’t worry if you forget any of the directions – you will be allowed to ask your examiner to confirm them. If you take a wrong turning, your test result won’t be affected unless you make a driving error while doing it. If you do get lost, your examiner will help get you back on track.

Ready for your Practical Driving Test?

Safely Book Your Practical Driving Test

As long as you’ve passed your driving theory test, you can book your practical test. There is no minimum number of driving lessons you must have done to take your practical test.

As with the theory test, you can book your practical test online through the gov.uk website. On the website you can also change the date of your test (subject to availability) and check the details of your test.

You must remember to bring the following things to your driving test:

Your UK provisional driving licence
Your theory test pass certificate
A car (most people use their instructor’s car)
If you don’t bring any of these items with you, your test will be cancelled and you won’t get your money back.

You are also allowed to bring someone along to the test with you. This will usually be your driving instructor, but you are also allowed to bring a friend or family member, as long as they are over 16 years old and don’t take any part in the test. You are not allowed to bring a foreign language interpreter with you as the test must be taken in English or Welsh only.

Practical Driving Test booking via Gov.uk

Practical Test Booking Prices

Test CentrePrice
Goodmayes£70
Barking£70
Hornchurch£70
Wanstead (Hermon Hill)£70
Chingford£70
Sidcup£90
Hither£90
South Norwood£90
Brentwood£90

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