With the exception of our incredible key workers, most of us have been staying at home and limiting our contact with others for many weeks. As certain lockdown restrictions start to ease, social distancing is still vitally important in order to control the spread of COVID-19, which is why we still cannot travel in a vehicle with anyone outside of our household.
For most drivers, staying at home has meant an unusually long break from behind the wheel, but what if you were in the process of learning to drive before the pandemic? Driving tests and lessons have been suspended since March 2020 for everyone except our amazing key workers. Until it’s safe enough for social distancing guidelines to be lifted, it seems unlikely that this will change.
Here’s how things currently stand:
Car driving tests and lessons
Car driving tests and lessons are suspended and have been since 20th March 2020. Emergency car driving tests are available for key workers only.
If you booked a car driving test before the pandemic, you should receive an email with a new date and time approximately two weeks before your old test was due. If you prefer, you can cancel your car driving test for a full refund by emailing the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). There’s more information about how to do this here.
Motorcycle, lorry, bus, tractor or approved driving instructor (ADI) tests and lessons
All of these types of driving tests and lessons have also been suspended since 20th March. If you have one of these tests booked, it should be automatically cancelled and you’ll receive a full refund, then you will be able to book a new test once everything is operational again.
Driving theory tests
Like other types of tests, driving theory tests are also currently suspended, other than for key workers.
Anyone with a theory test booked should get an automatic cancellation and a full refund, and will be able to rebook once testing is once again underway.
Important note: If your driving theory test certificate and licence is due to expire soon, it cannot be extended. You will need to book and pay for another theory test when it’s possible to do so.
How can I keep learning until my driving lessons start again?
If you’re a budding driver and you want to ensure you are ready to restart your driving lessons without missing a beat, then there are ways to keep your skills sharp and help yourself hit the ground – and the road – running once you can get back behind the wheel:
Brush up on driving theory
If you’ve yet to take your theory test, or even if you have and you want to keep your learning fresh, now is a great time to really get to grips with what you need to know. The driving theory test consists of 50 multiple choice questions, and the high pass mark of 43 correct answers shows how important this knowledge is.
Read up on The Highway Code, Know your Traffic Signs and Driving – The Essential Skills. Then, when you feel ready, take a mock theory test and hazard perception test.
Host a driving theory quiz
We’ve all become online quiz specialists over the last few months, so why not enlist the help of family and friends by including a round on driving theory, road signs and/or the rules of the road during your next quiz night?
It’s no bad thing for even the most well-established drivers to test their driving know-how!
Practice ‘show me, tell me’
During the practical driving test, you’ll be asked two vehicle safety questions, often known as the ‘show me, tell me’ questions.
‘Show me’ questions are those where you show how you’d carry out a safety task. ‘Tell me’ questions involve you explaining how you’d carry out a safety task before you start driving.
There are seven ‘show me’ questions and 14 ‘tell me’ questions, and your examiner could ask you any one of each, so it’s important to know your stuff and have your answers prepared. A wrong answer constitutes a driving fault, also known as a ‘minor’.
There’s a full list of all questions and answers here, plus videos to help you absorb the information in a visual way.
Happy learning, and best of luck for your theory and/or driving test!