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Highway

Top Tips for Learners

Driving Lesson

JOYPAT DRIVING SCHOOL

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YOUR OWN INITIATIVE

  • Practice makes perfect, as they say. If you can, supplement your instructor lessons with driving sessions accompanied by a friend or family member. This can really speed up your rate of progress towards becoming test-ready.

 

  • Make sure you check your eyesight before your first lesson! You don't want a trip to the Opticians to slow you down!

  • Keep working on the manoeuvres until you feel super confident performing them!

  • Get the most out of every single minute with your instructor and ask them all those niggling little questions. Guaranteed you will not be the first person to have asked.

  • Listen to your instructor’s coaching, and practice until you understand what you’re learning. There are no silly questions.

  • Many of the rules in the Highway Code are legal requirements. Being familiar with the legal requirements of any road situation will help you avoid serious faults.

  • Don't forget the theory test! Get your friends or family to start testing your knowledge.

  • Learning takes time, so be patient with yourself and don't get annoyed if you struggle to get to grips with something the first time around.

  • Before you can get in the driver's seat, you need a provisional driving licence. You can't use this until you're 18, but you can apply for it up to three months before your 18th birthday.

 

  • Everyone makes mistakes; the key is not to dwell on them. Always concentrate on what’s ahead of you, not what’s already happened.

 

  • Try and talk things through in your head so that it becomes second nature.

 

  • When performing manoeuvres for the first time, take them slowly so that you have plenty of time to make adjustments if you go wrong.

 

  • For most learner drivers, the hardest lesson they have to learn is to control their nerves. We always say to our students, "Once you have learnt to control your nerves, you can then control the car." It makes learning to drive an enjoyable experience; and a happy one.

 

  • Ask to use one of your lessons leading up to your test to do a mock/practice driving test. This will get you used to the idea of taking a test and ready you for what to expect on the actual day.

 

ON THE ROAD

 

  • If you stall the car, don't panic! Stay confident, restart the engine, check for any other hazards and then pull off again if it's safe.

 

  • Driving too slowly can be just as dangerous as driving too quickly! Always adhere to speed limits and maintain a steady speed where possible.

 

  • The car's horn should only be used to alert others to your presence when necessary—don't use it in an aggressive way!

 

  • Never forget the saying ‘look once, look twice, think bike’. Never take your eyes off the road.

 

  • Don’t just follow the driver in front of you. Make your own decisions and be aware of your surroundings.

 

  • Before setting off anywhere, make sure you adjust your seat so that you're comfortable and can reach all controls with ease.

 

  • Leave yourself plenty of space from the car in front. This will give you more time to see what’s ahead and prepare for anything that might happen.

 

  • When there is a delay in pulling away, always do another right shoulder check before moving.

 

  • Always remember to keep a safe distance between you and the vehicles around you. In adverse weather conditions leave even more space to account for longer stopping distances.

 

  • Safe observations are an essential part of learning how to drive a car. LADA: Look, Assess, Decide and Act.

 

  • Your pre-driving cockpit drill is crucial. Always remember the DSSSM routine: doors, seat, steering, seatbelt, and mirror.

 

  • The best way to conquer your fears is to face up to them. The more you drive, the more you will become used to it.

 

  • In normal driving, always keep to the left. 

 

  • Try to get in as much time behind the wheel as you can. The more you drive, the more confident you will feel!

 

  • Keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road!

 

  • Don't let other drivers pressure you into speeding up or rushing through manoeuvres. As long as you're sticking to the speed limit, that's all that matters.

 

  • Less Space = Less Speed. This is particularly important when travelling through highly congested areas.

 

  • Look, Assess, Decide, Act. LADA.

 

  • Not only is it illegal to use your phone whilst driving, just the sound of it going off can be distracting. If you keep your phone on silent whilst you’re driving it could stop you from even thinking about it.

 

  • As well as focusing on the road ahead, keep an eye out for pedestrians, cyclists and animals!

 

  • Take as many opportunities as possible to look, see and act on what's happening ahead and around you.

 

  • Remember the fundamental driving rule: Mirror - Signal - Manoeuvre (Position, Speed and Look!)

 

  • Always give yourself plenty of time to make decisions when approaching junctions and hazards. Space ahead of you is key. Remember, only a fool breaks the two second rule, and if it's wet on the floor increase it to four.

 

FOOTWEAR

  • Wear appropriate shoes during your driving lessons—flip flops are no good!

 

  • It’s easier to control the pedals while wearing comfortable shoes. Heavy boots can make it hard to perfect driving techniques and heels will get scuffed and give you less control. Choose thin, narrow shoes to give you the necessary ‘feel’ on the pedals.

 

  • Wearing the wrong footwear while driving can not only make it harder, but it can also be dangerous.

 

  • When stopping behind another vehicle at lights or a junction, make sure you can see their wheels. Say ‘tyres on tarmac’ to help you remember.

 

  • Another tip that is short and sweet: left is best!

 

  • Don't give up part way through the driving test because you think you've failed. Keep going and believe in yourself!

 

  • Most people fail on observations—don't focus so much on what you're meant to be doing in the car, that you forget to keep an eye on what's happening outside of the car!

 

  • Try not to let nerves get the better of you.

 

  • Eat before your test! A common human element of panic is to not eat. By not eating you just magnify your stress levels and push the panic levels through the roof. You may feel calm, but those around you can smell it a mile off!

 

  • The best thing to focus on is learning to drive safely. It isn't just about passing the test. Building confidence and learning at your own pace is the key to success.

 

  • Get your instructor to carry out mock driving tests with you—it's a great way to prepare for the big day!

 

  • Learn to drive in different conditions.You can’t be 100% certain that road conditions will be dry when it comes to your test.

 

  • Don't rush anything. Take everything one step at a time so that you can be confident going into your test. We make mistakes when we rush.

 

  • Don’t plan on driving just for the test, plan on driving for life!

 

  • Be positive: focus on passing your test rather than worrying about failing it.

 

  • Get enough sleep the night before your driving test and make sure you eat breakfast. Don’t plan anything else for the day - you don’t want to worry about something else you have to get done!

 

  • If the examiner asks you to do something and you don't understand what they mean, don't be afraid to ask!

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