Mock Driving Test

Many learner driver go into the driving test without previously taking a mock driving test. Although it is not essential to take a mock driving test, it can significantly improve your chances of passing the real exam.

A mock driving test allows you and your instructor to identify any areas of your driving that need improvement before taking the DVSA practical driving test This section will offer tips for learner drivers and also advice for those taking private lessons who intend on taking a mock driving test.

The actual driving examiners driving test report sheet is also available for download, which can be used for a mock driving test.

Practical driving test mock exam

As a learner driver gains a good level of proficiency in driving and test standard is in sight, taking a mock driving test is beneficial. It is of course significantly cheaper if you have failed a mock driving test and not the real one. Failing the real DVSA test involves more test booking fees, often further driving lessons and there is also the driving test waiting times to take into account.

Of course using your existing instructor for a mock driving test is convenient although using a different instructor just for a mock test is also an advantage. A ‘fresh’ set of eyes on your driving standard will certainly filter out any areas that are in need of improvement.

Take a mock driving test to improve confidence

During the course of your driving lessons, you will have likely become accustomed to the way the instructors car drives and may be using reference points specific to that car. With this in mind, try to find an identical mock driving test car when looking for an alternative instructor.

Mock driving test private tuition

If you are teaching a learner or if you are a learner receiving driving lessons privately off family or friends, a fully qualified driving instructor is best qualified to provide a mock driving test.

If you wish to conduct a mock driving test however, download DL25 driving test report sheet which is used by examiners during the practical driving test. Print a copy and use it as a mock driving test report sheet. An explanation of all the sections can be found in driving test report explained.

Although the real practical driving test will only involve a single manoeuvre and a 1-in-3 possibility of the emergency stop, ask your instructor for an extended mock driving test. An extended mock driving test should last a little over 1 hour and will involve all driving manoeuvres and the emergency stop.

This mock exam should also include around 20 minutes of independent driving (which should also cover sat-nav usage), dual carriageways (if applicable in your area) and to cover as many challenging areas on the driving test routes that are applicable to your driving test centre.

Failed mock driving test

If you have failed a mock driving test by your current instructor or by an alternative instructor, it is unlikely you will pass the real driving test exam. Try if possible to take further driving lessons before your test practicing the areas that you have failed the mock exam. If there is not enough time, push the driving test forward to a later date.

You are able to do this free of charge providing you give the DVSA a minimum of 3 working days notice. Saturdays are classed as a working day to the DVSA. All DVSA contact information can be obtained in the How to start learning to drive section.

Mock driving test booking

Any fully qualified driving instructor is able to provide a mock driving test. When contacting a driving instructor, simply explain how many driving lessons you have previously had and that you are at test standard but would like the opinion of an alternative instructor. Ask the instructor which car they use for tuition as using the same make and model as your current instructor will be of benefit.

Mock driving test lesson

Take a mock driving test within a minimum of a 2 hour lesson. This will allow you 40 minutes or so to warm up, just as real test. A real driving test will last for around 40 minutes, a mock exam will last around 1 hour so as to incorporate all manoeuvres and the emergency stop.

Mock driving test tips

  • Take a mock driving test not only with your instructor but with an alternative instructor.
  • If taking private driving lessons and you intend on taking a mock driving test, print a mock driving test report sheet and follow the advice found in what to expect on a driving test.
  • Take the mock driving test around your test centre and difficult parts of the test routes.
  • Extend the mock exam to incorporate all manoeuvres and the emergency stop.
  • If you fail a mock driving test, take further driving lessons of reschedule the real driving test.
  • Take mock driving tests over various times of day to emulate all traffic conditions.

23 thoughts on “Mock Driving Test”

  1. sam brown

    im going to fast and cant keep it on 30 miles per hour, any advice

  2. Hi Sam,
    Driving too fast or too slow for learners or new drivers is quite common and it can easily fail a driving test. As you gain in experience, you tend to get a ‘feel’ for your speed so will need to check less often.
    If your case, it needs to be a forced action by the supervising passenger, usually a driving instructor – or if you haven’t got one, ask a friend to help out.
    At random stages between every 5, 10, 15 or 20 seconds, the instructor / passenger should say ‘check’. This is when you need to check your speed and say it out loud.

    For best results, when they say ‘check’, take a quick look into your mirrors and then the speedo. Say out loud what speed you are moving at followed by the colour of the vehicle behind you.

    It is a bit tedious but after a short while, the forced action will become a natural one, plus it will ensure you see what’s in your mirrors rather than just looking at them.

  3. Barb

    I’m a little concerned about my instructor. I am learning on an automatic. In my first lesson, he told me to only use the handbrake when I park. Is this because it’s an automatic?

    He also really minimized the importance of using the rear view mirror, telling me that race cars don’t even have them. Does that sound at all correct?

    He also prompted me to position my seat in a manner that I am not comfortable.

  4. Hello Barb,
    The purpose of using a handbrake when stopping in general traffic is to control the car and prevent it from rolling (usually backwards if stopping on a slope). Automatics don’t roll, so there’s not too much need for the handbrake in general driving.

    The issue here is with the rear view mirror. All good instructors must emphasize the frequent use of mirrors. I’m not sure what race cars he’s seen, but most of them do have mirrors. Perhaps he was making a point of the need to physically check blind spots along with checking mirrors? I would perhaps ask him to explain his opinion on mirrors in more details. If you do not know what’s going on around you whilst driving, then you do not have control, which results in accidents. The only way you know what’s going on is to check mirrors.

    The seating position seems a little concerning too. You want your attention to be on the road whilst driving – not how uncomfortable you are, so a comfortable seating position is important, but you must be able to reach all controls with ease.

  5. Haidar

    Im having trouble with my lessons, i sill make mistakes such as stalling quite often and i have had lessons for about 3months i have definetly gotten better at it but i still make the same mistake and from there i tend to panic becasue i feel pressured by the driver behind me or my instructor who seems to get annoyed quite quickly.

  6. Hi Haidar,
    It is quite common this. You’re likely letting the clutch out too quickly and stalling because you’re anxious about moving away slowly and inconveniencing those behind you. In reality though, lifting the clutch up slowly to move off will not inconvenience other drivers and ironically stalling does of course slow things down considerably.

    You need an intensive session of moving off and stopping on quiet roads until you feel confident with the speed at which you lift the clutch to avoid stalling. Then use this exact speed on busier roads and essentially concentrate on this and not what other drivers might be thinking.

    However, it doesn’t help if your instructor is getting angry as this is making you more anxious. He or she should be looking at remedial action rather than getting angry. An angry instructor isn’t much use to anyone, so I would possibly consider looking for an alternative.

  7. Haidar

    Wow thank you this is actually helpful i didn’t even expect a reply.

    One more thing i’d like to ask, any advice on how i can stay calm and confident through out my driving lessons i always feel the pressure from somewhere.

  8. To be honest Haidar, much of your confidence comes from your instructor. It generally starts from the first lesson where the instructor encourages you and gives you confidence as you go along in stages. It is perfectly natural to feel nervous, but if you are lacking confidence in certain areas, then it is probably time to look back, specifically within these areas where confidence is lacking and address them. I don’t generally recommend changing instructors, but I would perhaps consider it in your case – ensure they’re patient, approachable and explain exactly what you’ve said to me and that you’d like to cover specific areas where you’re lacking in confidence and rebuild from there. You could try this with your current instructor, but if they make you feel anxious then it might be pointless.

  9. Haidar

    I have had this instructor for about 3 months, the last time i tried changing i got all sorts of no’s from family who clearly wanted me to stay with the same instructor changing might not be a option, I will have to find another way around, any more tips maybe?

  10. Talk to him about what I said in regards to stalling, work out a system on quiet roads where you don’t stall and then use that on all roads. Try explaining that by him getting angry stresses you and makes you stall more and remember that you’re not holding up traffic by moving away slowly. You’ll also need to talk to him about which areas you feel a lack of confidence and why, put in a plan to go over these areas and remedial action. But this is the sort of stuff he should be doing anyway really.

  11. Harry

    Got my test on the 6th Sep and I keep failing my mock exams but I know someone who failed all hers but passed real exam my point is I still make little mistakes and when I make a little one I then go make a big one thinking I’ve already failed because of the other one is there any tips on how to stay focussed and not get nerve get to me for example I’m really good when driving in a normal lesson but as soon as a test (mock) is mentioned I get agitated and mess up but I know I can do it but somthing stops me

  12. Hi Harry
    What you describe is very common, but it’s not really anything to do with the driving test, it’s about how you deal with stress. One technique that works well specifically for the driving test is commentary driving and it involves you literally reciting each and every instruction to yourself whilst driving. I’ve had test candidates do this literally out loud during a test and it has excellent results. It enables you to focus on the task at hand and ahead, leaving you much less stressed and with little time to dwell on previous mistakes.

    Ask your instructor if they know about it and train yourself to drive this way. It’s best to do it aloud, but if you have an issue with this, you can speak to yourself in your mind (if you know what I mean). It really does help you to focus, so give it a try.

  13. Haider

    So my driving test is on the 30th october, so close yet i make slight errors here an there, nothing to major now as i have progressed alot in the recent months, im also having a mock test real soon. the one thing that affects me is my nerves, i can’t seem to control them before or during our lessons

  14. Dean

    Im not a expert at all but i suffer with nerves like you guys in mock test just rememeber mock test are just there to help , and if you cant do any more lessons or mocks before your test just look positive over your papers and think this is what i need to do to pass .. you guys can pass just relax and it all happens naturally trust me i had so much nerves before and now im there its just about getting over the finish line good luck

  15. Dean

    Today .. i passed my test .. what i learnt about myself this process is when your driving take your time , dont rush .. infact heres a little thing to rememeber not sure looking looking always looking is it clear yes or no if its clear go go go .. tho still be careful

  16. maria

    hi there,
    any advice if you’re really nervous on your test day?
    I already failed my first attempt … I know how to drive apart when I know someone is watching and looking for my mistakes…so this makes me terrible nervous and seems to forget everything I’ve learn about driving

  17. Hi Maria,
    The key really is to filling your mind with something other than nerves and stress whilst out on the drive. With your instructor, practice a form of commentary driving. This is essentially a process of talking your way through each and every procedure whilst driving. Might sound a bit mad, but it works very well in getting things done properly, predicting and spotting hazards, plus it focuses the mind on the task at hand rather than nerves and mistakes. I’ve had learner drivers do this out loud on the test and examiners think it’s great. There may also be some tips in beating driving test nerves.

  18. Roger

    Keeping the car stationary though by means of the footbrake alone means that your brake lights can dazzle the driver behind. If you’re going to be stationary for more than a few seconds I would recommend using the parking brake. Quite a number of cars nowadays have electronic parking brakes, usually a little switch behind the shift control, which will automatically release upon acceleration.

  19. c.lea

    hi I started my automatic driving lessons at the end of January 2 hours per week (the odd weekend off) so 32 hours in total, I got my first car a month ago and have been driving that every day alongside my partner. This has helped my confidence massively, I just need to get into the swing of checking my mirrors more often as that is my main downfall. my test is next week and I am starting to panic now that I haven’t covered everything that I will need to be aware of on test day. my instructor has never shown me the emergency stop, is this worth mentioning and will I need to do this on my test?

    any tips for what the main minors are to try and avoid?

  20. Hi c.lea,
    It’s important that you know the emergency stop not only for the driving test but for when you pass. There’s around a 1 in 3 chance you’ll be asked to do it on your test.
    If your mirrors aren’t quite up to scratch and if you haven’t done the emergency stop, I would perhaps consider squeezing in as many professional lessons as you can before the test. One of the most common reasons for test failures is observation / mirrors. See top 10 driving test failures. Examiners are strict on observation, mirrors and the emergency stop, so you’ll certainly need a few more lessons if possible.

  21. c.lea

    thank you for getting back to me so quickly, this is very helpful and I will definitely be mentioning this on my lesson tomorrow. my partner has gone through the emergency stop with me briefly but being so close to my test I would like my instructor to help too. I am now going to practice my over exaggerated mirror checks ha! good luck me!

  22. Anita Dean

    Hi Maria
    I am a Driving Instructor and a lot of my pupils use commentary driving to overcome nerves. It works really well as it keeps your mind focused on the task at hand rather than your nerves. Its a technique I get all my learners to use at some stage of the learning process. Dont be worried about using it during your practical test the examiner will think its great. I get quite a few examiners complement my pupils after their test for good commentary drives
    Good luck

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