The Practical Driving Test

The first part of the practical driving test is an eyesight test.

You will have to read the number plate from a distance of:

• 20 metres for vehicles with a new-style number plate
• 20.5 metres for vehicles with an old-style number plate

New-style number plates start with two letters followed by two numbers, for example AB51 ABC

Next you will be asked two vehicle safety questions. These are also known as the 'show me, tell me' questions.

The examiner will ask you one 'show me' question, where you will have to show them how you would carry out a vehicle safety check. You will also be asked one 'tell me' question, where you will have to explain to the examiner how you would carry out the check.

If you give the wrong answer for one or both questions, you will be marked with one driving fault.


Show and Tell




The driving ability part of your driving test

The driving part of your test will last about 40 minutes. Throughout the test your examiner will be looking for an overall safe standard of driving.

Your general driving ability

During your test the examiner will give you directions which you should follow. You will drive in various road and traffic conditions. You should drive in the way your instructor has trained you.

You might also be asked to carry out an emergency stop.

Your ability to reverse your vehicle safely

You will be asked to complete an exercise to show how well you can reverse your vehicle. The examiner will choose one exercise from:

Independent driving section of the driving test

Your practical driving test will include approximately 20 minutes of independent driving.
This means you will need to either follow:

It does not matter if you do not remember every direction, or if you go the wrong way, that can happen to the most experienced drivers.
Independent driving is not a test of your orientation and navigation skills. Driving independently means making your own decisions, this includes deciding when it is safe and appropriate to ask for confirmation about where you are going.

Book your test

Click to book your practical driving test online with the DSA.

The practical driving test costs £62 on week days, £75 on evenings and weekends.