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This guide is for anyone hoping to pass their driving test and get licenced to drive a manual car in the United Kingdom.
On This Page, You’ll Find:
- A poll – we want you to tell us how much you think it will cost to learn to drive
- How many hours of tuition you’ll need to pass your test – based on feedback from instructors
- The average cost of driving lessons – based on 35 driving instructors
- Driving test pass rates – based on official test centre data
- The two things you absolutely must do if you want to pass your test
- Why a local experienced instructor is better than your mum or dad (no matter how good their driving)
- 6 of the best tips to help you pass first time
- The true cost of getting your licence – a look at the total cost for an average person
How Much Do You Think It Costs to Learn to Drive and Get Your Licence?
Through our site here at Job Prices, we like to ask our visitors how much they think certain projects will cost them.
The poll below is entirely optional, you can skip it if you wish.
Consider the following:
- Provisional driving licence cost
- Cost of driving lessons
- Study material
- Cost of theory and practical tests, plus repeat tests if required
- Insurance and fuel should you want to practice driving with someone other than your instructor (ie a parent)
How Many Hour’s Tuition Are Needed to Pass a Driving Test?
As part of our investigation into the cost of learning to drive, we asked 35 driving instructors from around the UK how many hours they thought a typical student would need.
The average number of tuition hours came in at 45.
According to research by Job Prices, the average number of tuition hours is 45
In addition, most of the instructors we contacted advised us to practice with a friend or relative to compliment the professional driving tuition.
Back in 2015, The UK’s driving licence agency recommended an additional 22 hours of private driving lessons with someone who has at least 3 years’ of experience.
What is the Average Cost of a Driving Lesson in 2018/19?
During November 2018 we asked 35 driving instructors how much they charge per lesson.
Many of the firms we contacted offered discounts for the first 5 lessons or so and we have included this in our average cost per lesson, which is based on 45 lessons.
According to our research, the average cost of a driving lesson is now £23.
Based on research conducted during November 2018, the average cost of a driving lesson in the UK is £23
Driving Test Pass Rates – How Likely Are You to Pass Your Test?
Every test centre in the UK publishes their pass rates so it’s worth checking your local centre.
Looking at the UK as a whole, here are the average pass rates by gender for 2017-18:
Women – 43%
Men – 50%
The pass rates for those taking their first test and those of various age groups are also published in the data.
The Two Things You Must Do if You Want to Pass Your Test
As with learning any new skill, there are two fundamental principles you must master if you want to achieve proficiency quickly:
- Get professional tuition and guidance from an experienced instructor.
- Practice, practice, practice.
Sure, some people pass their test without any professional tuition but this is rare.
You can pass the test without any extra hours beyond those spent with an instructor but this is perhaps the most expensive and slowest way to achieve proficiency.
The fastest way to pass a test is to learn how to drive from an instructor and gain experience by going out on the road with a relative to practice what you’ve learnt.
Why Professional Tuition is Essential
Your mum or dad might be the safest and even the most experienced drivers on the road but that doesn’t mean the guidance they offer you will help you pass your test.
The chances are, it will probably hinder it.
Professional instructors will have many hundreds, perhaps thousands of hours of teaching experience.
The methods they use are tried, tested and proven to work.
In addition, your instructor will know the most likely routes you’ll be taken on during your actual test. A good instructor will take you to practice on these routes so you know the area near the test centre well.
They will also know the most likely locations for the hill start, emergency stop and three-point turn elements of the test. As well as this, they will know the most common reasons for a student to fail and this knowledge can help them to customise the training you receive so you maximise the chances of passing first time.
6 Pro Tips to Help You Pass Your Test First Time Without Blowing Your Budget
1) Take advantage of introductory offers
Many firms offer discounts for the first 5 or 10 lessons as a way to attract new customers. These are a great way for new learners to save money. Just make sure the remaining lessons are competitively priced.
2) Pay upfront for a set number of lessons
Paying upfront for a set number of lessons, perhaps 10 or 20 at a time, can save you up to 20%. Make sure you check if your instructor offers these discounts before you start any driving lessons.
3) Block book lessons
Driving instructors waste a lot of time travelling between students. By block booking lessons for 2 or 3 hours back to back, your instructor can save time, fuel and money and might be willing to pass on some of this saving to you in the form of a discount. Check their policy before you start any lessons.
4) Check the pass rates for your local test centres
Did you know that UK-based test centres publish their results and pass rates online each year? If your local test centre has very poor pass rates, consider using a neighbouring centre and make sure you practice driving in that area to familiarise yourself with the roads.
5) Do lots of mock tests
Mock tests are a great way to practice for the real thing. The more mock tests you do, the better you’ll be able to deal with the stress of the real test and your chances of passing will be improved. We also suggest you undertake mock tests during spells of poor weather, including rain and wind – these are real-world situations and there’s every chance your real test may be conducted during such weather.
6) Put in extra hours of practice
The average person needs around 70 hours of driving experience before taking a test. This can be a mixture of professional tuition and practice with a relative. A good method is to try 2 hours of practice for every 1 hour of expert tuition. So, if you complete a one-hour lesson learning 3-point turns with a pro, you should cement this knowledge by doing at least another 2 hours of practice with a relative.
So How Much Does it Really Cost to Get a Driving Licence?
Take a look at our research below, this is how much the average person will pay to learn how to drive and pass all the tests.
|Provisional driving licence||£34|
|Average cost of 45 driving lessons||£1035|
|Study material, online mock tests||£50|
|Insurance for provisional driver on someone else's policy||£750|
The cost of insurance for a provisional driver varies but is around £1500 for one year and £750 for six months.
Don’t forget; if a provisional driver fails a test, extra lessons and another test fee will need to be budgeted for.
This guide to driving lessons costs was written by Danny Woodley and was last updated in October 2019.
You’ll find many more cost guides in our motoring corner where we delve into the costs of car ownership and maintenance.
From car servicing and air-con recharges to window tinting and signage.