Driving Test Waiting Times -

Driving Test Waiting Times

Waiting Time

Since the covid 19 pandemic and the pausing of driving test waiting there is still over 500,000 on the waiting list for a driving test as of October 2023.

The DVSA have struggled to get these down, they do claim that they have reduced the waiting list since 2020. Some of the measures they have brought in as of April 2021 to reduce the waiting times is –

  • Carry out tests outside of regular hours, including at weekends and on public holidays.
  • Buy back annual leave from driving examiners.
  • Invite recently retired driving examiners to return to work.
  • Recruitment drive to bring in new examiners.

Since April 2021 the measure they have put in place had added 40,000 cars test a month on average. They do plan on continuing this method into 2024, they are not releasing what number their goal is and as when they will reduce some of these measures.

The DVSA in addition to changing their internal organisation method they have also brought in changes in the how driving test are booked. One rule that will be introduced is requiring people to wait 28 working days before being able to book a new test after failing one. The wait time will be increased from the current 10 working days. Another rule that will be implemented will require learner drivers to move or cancel their test at least 10 working days before to avoid losing their fee, rather than the current three working days.

 

Quicker Test

Getting a quicker test then you would like it no easy task with the huge back log. There are a few ways that you can improve your chances.

One way is to change the location of your test booking. Each test centre varies in there wating times, one of the best areas with the shortest waiting times in the northeast with an average waiting time of just 13.1 weeks. Darlington and Hartlepool, with a 11 week and 13 weeks wait respectively, are the quickest in County Durham. In Northumberland, Blyth and Alnick have the shortest wait with 13 weeks. In Tyne and Wear, Gateshead learners wait one week, and seven in Gosforth. Whereas in the London you are expected to wait in the region of 17-22 weeks waiting time.

Location does play in a large part of how long you need to wait for a test, but it is not always practical to have your driving test in a long-distance location. Issues could be timing, driving instructor not wishing to travel and increase cost in travel to location. There are services available that do look for driving test cancellations at your given and your surrounding centres of your choice. They are half the price of a driving lesson and can move your test booking to within a week in some circumstances. With the cost been so low, in many cases even if they are unable to find a date that works around your schedule it can be worth the risk as the saving potentials can run into the hundreds.

Book in advance

Once you have completed your theory test the next step if you haven’t already is to find a driving instructor. It is best that you only start your lesson if you have enough funds for around a lesson a week, as if not you are more likely to end up needing further lesson if your lesson are spread to far apart, costing you more than needed.

If funds and driving instructor have been found, with this current waiting time backlog it is best to look to get your date pencilled in as soon as possible. Speak to your instructor after your first lesson, as they will have a better idea as to how many lessons and to what time you may need to be test ready. Once this has been established get onto the gov site and book in the closest date to your estimated test ready date is. There is a high chance this is a lot further than you anticipated, at this point it could be a good idea to sign up to one of the driving test cancellations booking sites.

 

Outlook 2024

The DVSA was slow to implement change after the covid 19 pandemic backlog. However, the measures that have been brought in are now working and the waiting list is reducing. With these measure plus the macro UK economy been close to a rescission and people having to watch their pockets it is expected the waiting list to be close to 2019 levels. At that point the DVSA should reduce their measures.

  1. Vehicle MOT

An MOT (Ministry of Transport) test is a legal requirement for vehicles over three years old. This comprehensive examination assesses the roadworthiness of your car, including factors like brakes, lights, emissions, and overall safety. Make sure your car undergoes an MOT test annually to maintain its legality and ensure your safety on the road.

  1. Car Tax

All vehicles driven on public roads in the UK must be taxed. The process has become digital, so you’ll need to ensure your car is taxed before hitting the road. This can be done online or at a Post Office branch. Make sure to display your tax disc (if you have one) or have a valid electronic record of tax paid.

  1. Driving Insurance

Congratulations! You’ve passed your UK driving test and are ready to embrace the freedom of the open road. As you gear up to get behind the wheel of your own car, there are several crucial steps you need to take to ensure a smooth and legal transition from learner to licensed driver. From MOT and car tax to driving insurance, here’s a guide to the most important things to do after passing your driving test and getting a car.

  1. Vehicle MOT: Ensuring Safety and Compliance

An MOT (Ministry of Transport) test is a legal requirement for vehicles over three years old. This comprehensive examination assesses the roadworthiness of your car, including factors like brakes, lights, emissions, and overall safety. Make sure your car undergoes an MOT test annually to maintain its legality and ensure your safety on the road.

  1. Car Tax: Staying Road Legal

All vehicles driven on public roads in the UK must be taxed. The process has become digital, so you’ll need to ensure your car is taxed before hitting the road. This can be done online or at a Post Office branch. Make sure to display your tax disc (if you have one) or have a valid electronic record of tax paid.

  1. Driving Insurance: Covering Your Journeys

Driving insurance is a legal requirement in the UK. Before taking your car for a spin, ensure you have valid insurance coverage. There are different types of insurance policies available, ranging from third-party only to comprehensive coverage. Shop around to find a policy that suits your needs and budget.

  1. Registration and Vehicle Logbook (V5C): Updating Ownership Details

Once you’ve acquired a car, you need to ensure that the Vehicle Registration Certificate (V5C), also known as the logbook, is updated with your details as the new owner. This document is crucial for proving ownership and for various administrative purposes.

  1. Learning Maintenance Basics: Check Fluids and Tire Pressure

To keep your car running smoothly, it’s important to understand basic maintenance. Regularly check essential fluids like oil, coolant, and brake fluid. Additionally, ensure your tire pressure is within the recommended range for optimal performance and fuel efficiency.

  1. Organize Important Documents: Keep Everything Handy

As a new car owner, you’ll accumulate important documents related to your vehicle. Create a dedicated folder to store your MOT certificates, insurance documents, logbook, and other relevant paperwork. This will help you stay organized and ensure you have everything you need at your fingertips.

  1. Plan for Emergencies: Equip a Safety Kit

Prepare for unexpected situations by keeping an emergency kit in your car. This could include items like a first aid kit, warning triangle, flashlight, and basic tools. Being prepared can be a lifesaver in unforeseen circumstances.

  1. Understand Parking Regulations: Avoid Fines

Familiarize yourself with parking regulations in your area. Different zones might have different rules regarding parking duration, fees, and restrictions. Avoid unnecessary fines by following parking guidelines.

  1. Responsible Driving: Apply What You’ve Learned

Now that you’re a licensed driver, apply the skills and knowledge you’ve gained during your driving lessons and test. Follow road rules, practice defensive driving, and always prioritize safety.

Transitioning from a learner to a licensed driver is an exciting step, but it comes with important responsibilities. By following these steps, you can ensure a seamless transition and enjoy the newfound freedom of driving on UK roads while staying safe, legal, and responsible.

Driving insurance is a legal requirement in the UK. Before taking your car for a spin, ensure you have valid insurance coverage. There are different types of insurance policies available, ranging from third-party only to comprehensive coverage. Shop around to find a policy that suits your needs and budget.

  1. Registration and Vehicle Logbook (V5C): Updating Ownership Details

Once you’ve acquired a car, you need to ensure that the Vehicle Registration Certificate (V5C), also known as the logbook, is updated with your details as the new owner. This document is crucial for proving ownership and for various administrative purposes.

  1. Learning Maintenance Basics

To keep your car running smoothly, it’s important to understand basic maintenance. Regularly check essential fluids like oil, coolant, and brake fluid. Additionally, ensure your tire pressure is within the recommended range for optimal performance and fuel efficiency. You probably covered a lot of these basics with your driving instructor.

  1. Organise Important Documents: Keep Everything Handy

As a new car owner, you’ll accumulate important documents related to your vehicle. Create a dedicated folder to store your MOT certificates, insurance documents, logbook, and other relevant paperwork. This will help you stay organised and ensure you have everything you need at your fingertips.

  1. Plan for Emergencies

Prepare for unexpected situations by keeping an emergency kit in your car. This could include items like a first aid kit, warning triangle, flashlight, and basic tools. Being prepared can be a lifesaver in unforeseen circumstances.

  1. Understand Parking Regulations

Familiarise yourself with parking regulations in your area. Different zones might have different rules regarding parking duration, fees, and restrictions. Avoid unnecessary fines by following parking guidelines.

  1. Responsible Driving

Now that you’re a licensed driver, apply the skills and knowledge you’ve gained during your driving lessons and test. Follow road rules, practice defensive driving, and always prioritise safety.

Transitioning from a learner to a licensed driver is an exciting step, but it comes with important responsibilities. By following these steps, you can ensure a seamless transition and enjoy the newfound freedom of driving on UK roads while staying safe, legal, and responsible.