A simples guide

Can I learn to drive in my parents’ car?

Yes you can, but there’s a few things that you need to be aware of.

Firstly, you can learn to drive with anyone provided they are:

- 21 or over

- Have held a full licence for three years

Learning to drive parents car

The car that you use must be roadworthy, taxed and very importantly, it must have been insured for you to drive as a learner driver. So your parents will need to add you as a named driver to their insurance policy. There are a number of learner driver insurance options on the market, so it might be worth shopping around.

You must ensure that the car shows red L plates when you’re driving, and remember you need them on the front and on the back.

You’ll need to drive very responsibly and well within your limits. Driving school cars come with dual control, allowing the instructor to quite literally step in if required. Obviously your parent’s car won’t be fitted out in this way.

Make sure you’ve studied the theory side too. A driving test is made up of two parts, a theory test and the practical driving test. The theory side includes 50 multiple choice questions as well as a hazard perception test. Only when you have passed both of these will you be able to take your practical test.


learner car

Why use a driving school or an instructor?

We know that driving lessons are quite expensive and it might be tempting to get a parent to teach you instead.

On average it takes a learner driver around 30 to 40 hours of expert instruction to get to test standard. Unless you’re lucky enough to have a parent who’s a driving instructor, this means that it could take longer to reach the required standard.

A qualified instructor will have taken tough practical and theory tests. They’re also regularly assessed to ensure that they are able to offer a high standard of tuition.

They’ll know exactly what you’ll be examined on in the tests and will be able to tailor your tuition to get you to that standard efficiently. Importantly, they’ll also not teach you any bad habits that could unwittingly trip you up in the test itself.

An alternative may be to combine both approved lessons with some top up time from a willing parent. In this way you’ll get all the best driving instruction alongside some more road time practice.

Whatever you decide, be safe, and good luck when it comes to test day!

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