HOW LONG IS A DRIVING TEST | February 2024
How Long Is a Driving Test?

February 2024

How Long Is A Driving Test In February 2024

In this article, we will look at how long a driving test is and other related issues.

Topics that you will find covered on this page

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To earn your driver’s license in the UK, you must pass both a theory and practical driving test.

The Practical Driving Test

The driving part of the test should take approximately 40 minutes. The examiner will ask you to drive around one of your local test centre routes, during which they will observe your general driving ability and your independent driving.

You need to demonstrate that you are a safe driver, that you can control the car safely, you can perform different manoeuvres correctly and that you can follow signs for traffic. The examiner will ask you both ‘show me’ and ‘tell me’ questions also.

If you make 1 major fault or more during the practical portion of the exam, or collect 15 minor faults you will fail the test.

What to Take To Your Practical Test

Make sure to arrive at your scheduled test time. You will need to bring along your provisional licence, theory test pass certificate, and a form of ID.

The Practical Test

An Eyesight Check (5 minutes)

You’ll have an eyesight check as part of the driving exam. This involves being asked to read a number plate from 20 metres away. If you normally wear glasses or contact lenses, make sure to wear them during the test so that you can read the number plate clearly and drive safely.

‘Show Me, Tell Me’ Vehicle Safety Question (5 minutes)

At the beginning of your practical test, the examiner will ask you vehicle safety questions. One will be a ‘tell me’ question in which you have to explain how to carry out a safety task. The examiner will also ask one ‘show me’ question where you must demonstrate how to perform a safety manoeuvre.

General Driving (20 minutes)

The test will begin with a general driving assessment that should take approximately 10 minutes. The second task, known as the vehicle independent drive, will come next. You’ll need to follow one of the testn and around the local test centres while navigating different types of traffic conditions such as town, city, rural and motorway roads.

In addition to being able to confidently drive in all these scenarios, you must also be able to follow traffic signs correctly, be aware of other road users, read the road and traffic conditions, and park up on the side of the road. The driving examiner may ask you to perform an emergency stop at any point during the test without warning.

If you make a driving fault during your driving test, the examiner will give you either a ‘minor fault’ or a ‘major fault’. Although having below 15 isolated minor faults will be a pass, 15 or more minor mistakes will result in failing the test. Making any major errors guarantees that you will fail. The next part will be the independent driving section.

The independent driving part, which should last around ten minutes, is where you take over without instruction from the examiner. You will have to follow directions via road signs or your Sat Nav.

Manoeuvres (10 minutes)

For this section of the test, you will be asked to reverse your vehicle as part of a reversing exercise. 

It will be one of four manoeuvres: 

  • parallel park at the side of the road
  • reverse into a parking bay (either driving in and reversing your vehicle out or reversing in and driving out). Remember if you do reverse bay parking bay and take a wrong turn of the steering wheel, you can pull out and start again
  • reverse around a corner over the length of a certain amount of car lengths
  • turn in the road.
Manoeuvres

At the End of the Practical Test

The driving examiner will hand you a driving test report with your test results. It includes an overall summary of your performance and tells you whether you passed or failed.

What Are Fails In a Driving Test?

The examiner will give you specific feedback on what caused your driving test failure. Some of the most typical reasons a person can fail their driving tests are: not being able to control the car, not following the highway code, failing to execute manoeuvres properly, inappropriate speed, not stopping at a red light, unsafe reversing, and failing to pay attention to the road ahead.

"To earn your driver's license in the UK, you must pass both a theory and practical driving test."

Can You Fail Driving Test on a Manoeuvre?

Although there is no pass or fail grade, it’s important to execute the manoeuvre properly. If you make a mistake during the process, it could be classed as a major fault. Some errors while performing this test are: not looking properly in mirrors, failing to signal turns, stopping abruptly instead of smoothly flowing into a stop, and colliding with objects.

How Many Faults Are Allowed On Driving Test?

If you commit more than 15 driving faults, or one serious or dangerous fault during your exam, you will fail the test. The examiner uses a numbered scale of 1-3 to mark each fault, with 3 being the most severe.  An example of a level 3 fault would be running a red light, whereas forgetting to turn off your wipers would be classed as a level 1 offence.

Faults Are Allowed On Driving Test

If You Pass Your Driving Test

Congratulations on passing your driving test! Now, you need to send off your certificate and provisional driving licence to the Vehicle Standards Agency (DVLA) so they can update your records. You will then receive your full licence to replace your provisional licence.

If You Fail Your Driving Test

If you’re not successful the first time, you can retake your driving test as soon as possible. You still have a provisional license in the interim, so use the examiner’s feedback to improve on your test result. Take some more driving lessons with your driving instructor and keep practising how to drive independently and with your sat nav. Ask your driving instructor to allow you to practice on test routes for different test centres also

There are two ways that you can book your next driving test. You can either call the DVSA on 0300 200 1122 or visit the GOV.UK website and do it online.

What if I’m Not Happy With the Result of my Driving Test?

You can appeal the driving test decision if you’re not content with the result. Your appeal must be submitted within 21 days of your test date.

For more information, please go to:

http://www.gov.uk/appealing-against-a-driving-test-decision

How Many Driving Tests Can I Take?

You can retake your driving test an unlimited number of times, but you will have to pay a fee for each attempt.

How Much Does It Cost To Take The Driving Test?

The cost of the driving test for a car license is £62.

Cost To Take The Driving Test

Can I Take My Driving Test In Any Car?

No, the car you take your driving test in must be roadworthy, insured and licensed. The car must also have L-plates (or D-plates in Wales) clearly visible at the front and rear of the vehicle as is mandatory for all learner drivers. The test can be taken in your own car as long as it meets these requirements. 

If you’re taking your test in a manual car, you must also have an L-plate on the front and rear of the car. If you’re taking your test in an automatic car, only an L-plate on the rear of the car is required.

Can I Have Somebody Accompany Me During The Driving Test?

No, you will be alone with the examiner during your driving test.

How Long Is the Waiting List for a Driving test?

The waiting time for a driving test varies depending on where you live. In some areas, the wait can be up to six weeks.

How Long is an Extended Driving Test?

If you fail your driving test, you may be asked to take this significantly longer driving test. The test works by covering a wider range of skills and will take about 90 minutes.

Can I Drive Home From the Test Centre if I Pass?

Yes, you can drive home from the test centre if you pass your driving test. However, if you fail your driving test, you’ll need to arrange for someone to pick you up from the test centre.

Is a Hill Start in the Driving Test?

Though the driving test itself doesn’t include a hill start, your instructor may request that you complete one during your test.

What are the Pass Rates for the Driving Test?

The average pass rate for the driving test is 47%. This means that, on average, less than half of the people who take the test will pass and more than 40% of people fail. The pass rate for the theory part of the exam is usually higher than for the practical driving test.

Is the Emergency Stop Still In Driving Test?

The emergency stop will usually be asked of you during your driving test, most likely near the end.To execute the stop, follow these steps: Brake harshly, Steer in the direction of travel, Keep your foot on the brake pedal until the car comes to a full stop.

Tips On How To Pass Your Driving Test

Passing your dvla eye test doesn’t have to be difficult – by following a few simple tips, you can increase your chances of success. Make sure you pass the eyesight test and can read a number plate 20 metres away – if you can’t, it is an instant fail. So ensure your eyesight is up to scratch! Make sure you’re fully prepared before taking the test. Practice, practice, practice! Try a shorter route or routes in different weather conditions to get used to the road.  It helps if you have familiarised yourself with the driving test routes. Arrive on time and are well rested. It all helps to calm the pre test nerves! During the test, stay calm and focused. Safe driving is key – use your mirrors correctly, signal when necessary, and obey all traffic laws.

The Theory Test

The theory test is a computer-based test that covers important topics such as traffic signs, hazard perception and rules of the road. made up of two parts – the multiple-choice part and the hazard perception part. You need to pass both parts to pass the theory test.

How To Pass Your Driving Test

The Multiple Choice Test

The multiple-choice part is 45 minutes long and you need to answer 50 questions. The pass mark is 43.

The Hazard Perception Test

The hazard perception part is 20 minutes long and you need to identify 14 hazards. The pass mark is 44.

How Many Theory Tests Can I Take?

If you happen to fail your theory test, don’t worry! You can retake it as soon as you feel comfortable. However, keep in mind that each retest costs money.

Article author

Katy Davies

I am a keen reader and writer and have been helping to write and produce the legal content for the site since the launch.   I studied for a law degree at Manchester University and I use that theoretical experience, as well as my practical experience as a solicitor, to help produce legal content which I hope you find helpful.

Outside of work, I love the snow and am a keen snowboarder.  Most winters you will see me trying to get away for long weekends to the slopes in Switzerland or France.

Email – [email protected]

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Is the Waiting List for a Driving test?

The waiting time for a driving test varies depending on where you live. In some areas, the wait can be up to six weeks.

How Long is an Extended Driving Test?

If you fail your driving test, you may be asked to take this significantly longer driving test. The test works by covering a wider range of skills and will take about 90 minutes.

Can I Drive Home From the Test Centre if I Pass?

Yes, you can drive home from the test centre if you pass your driving test. However, if you fail your driving test, you’ll need to arrange for someone to pick you up from the test centre.

How Many Theory Tests Can I Take?

If you happen to fail your theory test, don’t worry! You can retake it as soon as you feel comfortable. However, keep in mind that each retest costs money.

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Disclaimer: Please be aware that this site is no longer under active management. As a result, we cannot assure the accuracy or relevance of the content provided. Visitors should use their discretion and consider the potential for outdated or inaccurate information before relying on any material found here.