When it comes to independence one of the first things that a lot of young people think is learning to drive. It may be that you’re thinking about getting your licence before you start university, or you’re already a student and want to get your licence before you graduate to improve your job prospects. Whatever your reason for wanting to get behind the wheel, there are a few key things you need to have ready ahead of your first drive.
To put your mind at ease and make the preparations for your first driving lesson an exciting prospect as opposed to a nervous one, Pass ‘N’ Go Driving School has put together this guide of everything you need to know.
Have you got your provisional driver’s licence?
The provisional driver’s licence is an important piece of kit when you’re learning to drive. Failing to have yours when you get behind the wheel means you risk being served with a maximum fine of £1,000 and three penalty points on your driving licence. Not the best start to your driving life.
You can easily avoid this problem, by applying for your licence when you are 15 years and nine months old — more than a year before you can start learning to drive.
Ready to get a hold of your provisional driving licence? Simply visit the GOV.UK website and apply while ensuring all of the following are correct:
2. You have a valid UK passport or another form of relevant identity. Check out this list for applicable forms of identification.
3. You know your National Insurance number.
4. You have made a note of every address that you’ve lived in over the past three years.
5. You haven’t been prevented from driving.
6. You have £34 so that you can cover the application fee.
Applications for a provisional driving licence can also be completed by post. Head to your local Post Office and pick up a D1 Application form to get started.
Have you taken the eyesight test?
A driving instructor will need to ensure that your eyesight meets the minimum requirements set out by the Driving Standards Agency before they can let you start learning to drive. Save time and hassle by taking the test before turning up for your first lesson. All you need to do is stand 20.5 metres away from a vehicle in good daylight and be able to read its number plate.
If you are struggling to read the number plate accurately, visit an opticians and get yourself a suitable pair of glasses or contact lenses. This will be a much better solution than turning up for your first driving lesson and then finding out that you can’t even get behind the wheel due to poor eyesight.
Have you read the Highway Code?
Don’t panic — we’re not asking you to read every word on every page inside the Highway Code ahead of your first driving lesson. Instead, it is advised that you have at least a basic understanding of the UK traffic rules and regulations, as well as knowing the meanings behind various road signs, ahead of getting behind the wheel.
Knowing these will mean that you’re less likely to come across something that you have never seen before on your lessons and panic as a result.
Following this guide and being in prepared in this way will help you to have a better first experience on the road to driving independence. Good luck and drive safe!