Congratulations on deciding to take some driving lessons. For many it’s a big moment on their road to independence.
There’s a lot to learn and to prepare for, although many learner drivers feel sick with nerves before their first lesson most come to realise that learning to drive isn’t as scary as they first thought.
If you’re thinking of booking some lessons, then you might want to read on for 5 learner driver tips that will help give you a little confidence boost before your first time behind the wheel. Good luck!
Even if you haven’t found an instructor yet, you can still get some practice and an insight into what it takes to be a good driver. Start reading up on the highway code and make yourself familiar with all the road signs you’re going to see out there.
A stop sign, speed limits, parking information – there’s a lot to learn, so it’s good to get a head start. Chances are you’ll know someone who has a car and is a competent driver, so sit in the car with them while they drive.
Let them show you the basics, and even narrate what they’re doing and why. Bear in mind they might have picked up some bad habits since they passed their test!
Research an instructor
If all your friends go with a certain instructor, you might feel pressured to do the same. Or if your brother passed with a particular driving school, your parents might suggest you go with them too.
However, everyone is different. Make sure that the instructor is your choice. Do plenty of research into their pass rate, their online reviews, the transmission of their vehicles and whether or not they provide male or female instructors.
Don’t book any lessons until you’re confident you’ve chosen the right instructor.
Choose your gearbox
Manual? Or automatic? Most people gravitate towards a manual gearbox because that’s the norm. However, it’s not for everyone. There’s no shame in driving an automatic car, in fact most people prefer them, even if they passed in a manual!
Many automatic vehicles are better on fuel and they also allow you to concentrate more on what’s happening around you, rather than panicking about gears and stalling. Bear in mind that you won’t be able to drive a manual car if you pass in an automatic.
Learn from your mistakes
The instructor will not expect you to perform an impeccable parallel park in your first lesson. So neither should you – don’t put too much pressure on yourself. You’re going to make mistakes, that’s what learning is all about.
If things do go wrong, don’t dwell on them – your instructor won’t, it’s there job to make you confident and competent behind the wheel.
Listen to your instructor
Your dad might not indicate at a junction, or check his mirrors as often as he should, but that doesn’t make him correct! Your instructor is teaching you to pass your test, which is a high standard of driving. Listen to them!