Logbook Loans: Learning to drive needn’t cost a fortune!
When it is time for you – or your son or daughter – to learn to drive, you may well worry about how much it is all going to cost. Especially if driving is a need rather than a want – perhaps for work or college or family circumstances – paying for the whole thing can seem yet another hurdle to overcome.
But does it really have to cost a fortune?
What you have to pay
Well, there are some fixed costs you cannot avoid. Before you can legally drive there are three things that you have to organise and pay for:
- Provisional driving licence – £34 (online – £43 by post)
- Theory test – £23
- Practical driving test – £62 (£75 if on a weekend or Bank Holiday)
So there will be a minimum cost of £119 that you have to pay in order to learn to drive. But over and above that, it is up to you. So let’s take a look at some different ways you can learn to drive.
What happens in the driving test?
Firstly, make sure you understand everything that will happen in the test. It will last for about 40 minutes and will include:
- an eyesight check
- ‘show me, tell me’ vehicle safety questions
- general driving ability
- reversing your vehicle
- independent driving
So when preparing for your driving test just make sure that you are prepared for every aspect of the test. You can find more information from Gov UK.
Professional driving lessons
Most people automatically look for professional tuition when learning to drive. Professional lessons are invaluable because the instructors are experienced and will be up to date with good driving methods. They also know all the little things that the driving test is particularly looking for, and can identify things that you are doing that could cause you to fail. So it is a really good idea to get some professional tuition to help you.
Professional lessons can be expensive though, particularly if they are your only opportunity to gain driving experience. So what other options are available?
Family and friends
We’ve all seen the anxious parent trying to teach the enthusiastic teenager to drive! It can be stressful for everyone involved. The main advantage of using someone you know to teach you to drive is that you can save a lot of money by not having to pay for lessons. But there is the risk that you will not be taught properly, and can pick up your teacher’s bad habits.
The other main issue with being solely taught by friends or family is that you may end up going for your test before you are ready. Currently around 51% of males and 44% of females pass their test first time, which means that many people do not. Given that the test costs £62, it could work out cheaper to pay for a couple of lessons than having to retake the driving test.
Also make sure that when you are out with family or friends, you clearly display an L plate. These are readily available from car stores and online retailers such as Amazon. There are also newer designs available that are easier to fix and display, such as Insight.
This is probably the best of both worlds. You could start with family member or friend on a driveway or somewhere else off road. Just practise using the gears and pedals to move the car slowly forward and backwards. Then progress to driving carefully for a few yards off road and practising turning the car.
A few gentle practice sessions like this can be a real boost to your confidence and prepare you to make the most of a few professional lessons. But – like any new skill – the more you practise in between lessons, the better you will do. If money is tight, you are probably better having lessons slightly less often but doing lots of practice with family and friends in between.
There are also various online resources that you can use to help you understand more about driving techniques and help you to really make the most of your driving lesson time.
So you can learn by using a combination of all the above that is most effective for you. It is definitely a good idea though to have a couple of professional lessons shortly before your test, to ensure that you really are ready to go!
Good luck with learning to drive! We hope that you find the best learning method for you and that you pass first time.
If you do need any financial help with learning to drive then do get in touch with us at Logbook Loans. We have a range of online loans that could help you, or you are welcome to call us on 0330 400 4137.