Advanced driving courses

An advanced driving course is a great way to improve your confidence and driving skills. And taking one could even reduce your car insurance costs too.

An advanced driving course is a great way to improve your confidence and driving skills. And taking one could even reduce your car insurance costs too.

Rory Reid
Car and technology expert
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Last Updated 21 AUGUST 2022

What is an advanced driving course?

An advanced driving course is designed to hone your road skills and awareness, with the aim of making you a safer and more competent driver.

Whether the thought of driving on motorways makes you break out in a cold sweat or you just want to brush up on your all-round skills, you can benefit from expert teaching to boost your confidence and ability behind the wheel.

Who can take an advanced driving course?

Courses are available to anyone with a full licence, from young drivers who’ve recently passed their test to over-70s who want to refresh their knowledge. There are courses aimed at specific age groups, and those that concentrate on particular areas of driving, so it’s worth looking around to find a course that suits your needs.

What advanced driving courses are available?

Here’s our round-up of some of the advanced driving courses available in the UK.

IAM RoadSmart

IAM RoadSmart is a registered charity that champions road safety in the UK. It’s dedicated to helping drivers and motorbike riders improve their skills.

IAM RoadSmart offers a range of Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) Quality Assured advanced driving courses, including:

  • Advanced Driver Course – this comprehensive £175 course, conducted by qualified experts, is divided into 6-12 sessions. You’ll focus on road position, speed, gear, acceleration and more. After taking your Advanced Test, you’ll be offered a full IAM membership, which may help to reduce your car insurance premium. There’s also a fast-track advanced course with dedicated one to one training costing £480, carried out over two half days. After the course you’ll be recognised as a certified expert driver.
  • Younger Driver Assessment – available for drivers under the age of 26, this one-hour course should help you gain greater confidence and skills on the road. It includes an on-road assessment in your own car and one-to-one advice tailored to suit you. Great for young drivers who lack experience.
  • Mature Driver Review – this one-hour session could be useful for older drivers who may have lost confidence over the years, or for those who simply want to sharpen their driving skills. The informal review is conducted by a qualified expert and takes place in your own car. It provides an honest unbiased review of our driving and supports you in any necessary improvements.

Pass Plus

The Pass Plus Scheme especially beneficial to new drivers who’ve recently passed their driving test. The short course, recognised by the DVSA, takes about six hours and covers a whole range of driving conditions and environments, like night driving and urban and rural driving. It can be taken with an approved driving instructor in your local area.

There’s no test at the end, but your instructor will assess your performance as you’re driving and you’ll have to reach the required standard in all modules to complete the course. You can then apply for a Pass Plus certificate from the DVSA, which you’ll need in order to apply for a discount on your car insurance.

Prices depend on where you live, the driving instructor and how long your training takes. Some local councils offer discounts – see a list on GOV.UK.

RoSPA Advanced Driving Course

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) runs Advanced Drivers and Riders courses arranged through local groups. You’ll be assigned a volunteer tutor and can take as many training sessions as you feel you need to be ready to take your Advanced Driving Test. Sessions typically take place in the evening and on weekends. The training is free, and usually takes place during evenings and weekends, but there’s a fee for membership and a £77 fee for the test.

RoSPA also offers a paid-for qualification in advanced driving delivered by fleet safety professionals.

The course focuses on improving your confidence, reducing your crash risk, improving fuel consumption, reducing wear and tear on your vehicle and more.

AA Advanced Driving Courses

The AA runs a range of driver safety courses, with specialist training conducted by AA-qualified instructors, who pick you up and give you the training you need. These include:

  • Pass Plus
  • Refresher driving lessons – these are ideal for drivers who are out of practice or want to expand their skills. You can have as many sessions as you like to practice skills like urban and rural driving, night driving and all-weather driving.
  • Motorway driving lessons – if you feel nervous about driving on motorways, this course could increase your confidence on multi-lane roads.

Prices vary, but you can get a discount on your first booking.

How are advanced driving courses different from ordinary driving lessons?

Advanced driving courses assume you have passed your test and already have basic driving skills. As well as helping you hone these, many advanced courses offer the chance to focus on areas where you want to improve your skills and confidence – motorway driving, night driving and rural driving, for example. 

Why take an advanced driving course?

The main benefit of advanced driver training is that you should become a more highly skilled driver, making you less of an accident risk.

If you find certain aspects of driving particularly challenging – for example, driving in wet or icy weather, joining or exiting motorways or using roundabouts – the courses could ease some of your anxieties and help you cope better with the demands of the road.

Not only should you become more competent and self-assured behind the wheel, you might also see a reduction in your fuel costs and give your tyres a longer lifespan as you learn to handle your car more efficiently.

Will taking an advanced driving course mean cheaper car insurance?

It might help to lower your car insurance costs because insurance providers typically view advanced drivers as being less likely to have an accident. However, there’s no guarantee that doing a course will help lower costs. You also need to bear in mind that any discount may be less than the cost of the course.

But if you can build up a track record of driving without accidents, this could help you build up a no claims bonus.

Another way you could save on your car insurance is by shopping around and comparing quotes. Comparing with us may be the ideal way to find a cheaper deal.

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