You’ve passed the driving test months, perhaps years ago but have not driven since? That’s actually surprisingly common and you’re not alone. In fact, one in ten qualified drivers haven’t driven for 12 months since passing their test.
Many individuals live in areas where good public transport is available and simply have no need to drive, but choose to pass the driving test and acquire a full licence to simply get it out of the way and done with. Other reasons include the high running costs for new drivers discouraging them from taking to the roads.
Many months or even years have passed and suddenly driving becomes a requirement. Relocation, new job – the reasons vary, but a daunting thought strikes you ‘Can I remember how to drive?’
As the age-old saying goes; ‘it’s like riding a bike’ and that is also true for driving a car regardless of how long it’s been. It’s probably best not to hop in and take to the busy roads on your own right away though. If it’s been a while, then you might be a little rusty and there is of course the issue of confidence that needs a boost. This is easily solvable and here we offer a few suggestions for those that have passed the driving test but have not driven since.
Hire a Driving Instructor
You’ve been there and done all that, but this is for refresher driving lessons. Refresher lessons are frequently taken by individuals that hold a full licence but have not driven in a while. It’s not about teaching you to drive again, it’s about confidence – knowing that you have a professional next to you who can take control if need be, that can refresh your driving skills and answer any questions.
If you haven’t driven in a several years, you’ll find professional tuition beneficial due to the constantly changing roads and regulations – all of which may be different since you were last behind the wheel. Long-term, it may also save you money as an instructor can offer you advice on how to drive with fuel efficiency in mind. Usually two or three lessons is sufficient, though some might find that one is enough. Essentially, book as many as required until you feel confident enough to go it alone.
Ask a Friend or Family Member
Another option is to ask a fully qualified and experienced friend or family member to sit next to you. Ideally start off in a quiet location. If you live on a busy street, ask your friend / family member to first drive you to a quiet location – you will need to ensure they’re insured to drive your car. First plan a route using Google Maps. Start somewhere quiet and gradually build up to busier locations as your confidence grows. Also start off on a quiet day such as a Sunday.
P-plates are designed for new drivers to attack to their car to warn other road users that they are inexperienced. Unlike L-plates, there is no regulation on P-plates so anyone can use them at any time. You may find that using P-plates helps with your confidence, so keep them attached until you feel ready to remove them.