December 12th, 2012 in Learning to Drive
Many people feel that selecting a driving instructor is as simple as making one phone call and accepting anybody in a vehicle that is sent to you by your local driving school or Mammoth Corporation like the AA. However, we are here to tell you that this is very rarely the best way to pass your driving test in the quickest, most effective fashion. We would like to give you a few things to think about, and supply you with a step by step process in how to best hand-pick an instructor.
The first statistic I would like to let you ponder is this; the average person requires 47 hours of professional instruction before passing their test. Now as insignificant as this may seem, you need to locate a driving instructor that you have things in common with and consequently will be able to get on with, and learn from efficiently for 47 hours. At AreYouDriving we encourage our instructors to let us know things about themselves, so that learners on our site can get a feel for what kind of person they are contacting. Where ever you are finding your instructor, request as much information on them, however irrelevant as it may seem, until you are satisfied you are making an educated choice.
In making this choice, we would advise that you request a free or reduced price initial lesson to ensure that all aspects are at your liking before progressing with that driving instructor. Asking a friend or relative who they used to learn to drive may be the first port of call when going through this process.
The next step is ensuring that your instructor is an approved driving instructor (ADI), which is a must for any driving instructor that is going to accept money for driving lessons. To find this out, any fully qualified ADI must display a green badge in the windscreen of the car that they are teaching you in. Statistics have shown that 9 out of 10 learners that pass their practical tests first time are taught by a fully qualified ADI, so this is definitely something that we would advise. Another fact about ADIs is that they are regularly checked by the DSA and then given grades, 4 being satisfactory, 5 being good and 6 being excellent. An additional positive aspect of using an ADI is that they are CRB checked, which checks if the instructors have a criminal record.
Another huge aspect that will affect your success in learning to drive is the vehicle that you learn in. Make sure that you are comfortable in the vehicle and that you feel you can learn efficiently with it. Remember, this is your tool, and therefore is effectively one of the most crucial elements. Furthermore, do not tolerate an instructor that is not punctual, and reliable in relation to cancelling and postponing lessons. I doubt that you would be allowed to turn up to work, college, university late on a regular basis, therefore neither should they.
Here are a couple more questions that we advise you to ask when selecting an instructor:
- What is their pass rate for learners sitting the practical test for the first time?
- How long has the instructor been teaching learner drivers?
- How long, and how much, are lessons?
- Will you get a discount for booking a block of lessons in advance?
- Does the tuition vehicle have dual controls?
- Where are you based?
- What times are you available?
- Are any additional study tools involved in the price? Such as DVDs and workbooks.
- Is the instructor male or female? (If this is something you feel is relevant).
When learning with a friend or relative, we would advise that you or the person teaching you purchases a guide such as 'The official guide to accompanying learner drivers.'
This is our how-to guide to selecting a driving instructor. Be as nosey, as patient, as picky as you like, because this is probably the most imperative decision that you can make for your driving life, and prolonged safety behind the wheel.