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  • Writer's pictureEllis Wood ADI

Busy busy busy

With the backlog created by covid-19 lockdown it’s all hands to the pumps now we are back to work. This has inevitably created very full diaries for most driving instructors. For you guys waiting to learn to drive it now means there is no such thing as a quick pass. So if you just want an instructor who is going to give you a few lessons then put you in for a test your best bet is to either wait a bit for the rush to subside (about a year to 18 months I reckon) or, get you theory test done and then contact a driving instructor to give you a driving assessment lesson where he/she guesstimates how many lessons you need and either agrees or disagrees that you should book a test when they become available.

DO NOT BOOK A TEST AND THEN LOOK FOR AN INSTRUCTOR as they are mostly fully booked, up until the end of the year in some cases, so you may lose your test slot if the instructor thinks your driving is below standard to let you loose with their car on a test. Instructors will most likely choose a pupil who has regular lessons than someone trying to ‘rush it’. You can use your own car if lucky enough to have one but it must be insured for the purposes of a test (contact your insurance company to make sure as they usually are not) and there are a few other little requirements like headrests must be fitted etc.

A lot of learners may have been practicing with parents and are not aware of the state the testing system is in. They think they can still easily get tests at short notice ‘like Dad did’ or scarily like there older sibling did a couple of years ago. There is a huge backlog of tests to get through (more than 420,000 I believe) and the DVSA are still working to COVID-19 restrictions of just 6 tests per examiner per day. The good news is that they are opening up weekends and bank holidays to try to reduce the backlog.

If your dream is to pass as soon as possible you may still find a quick test cancellation and even pass by just being taught by mum and dad but your odds of passing are severely reduced. The pass rate nationwide is 47% so if you fail you have a long wait for another one.

I guess what I’m trying to say is it’s much better to take your time to learn with a registered driving instructor who knows all the latest regulations and can adapt the teaching to your needs. Rushing your test is never a good idea as you may miss vital safety aspects and you are much more likely to crash in your first 2 years of passing your test. Now is a great time to relax into driving and get the best possible outcome which is to become a safe, competent and confident driver who can pass first time and be a happy confident motorist once they do.

Lets make driving fun again, reduce the aggression, get out of the ‘get it done and get it quick’ attitude that plaques our lives and leads to the driving stress and anxiety we see on the roads today. Take your time and enjoy the drive.

Oh and choose Driving With Ellis :)

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