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When’s the Best Time of Year to Take Your Driving Test?

Cartoon of Mark Sheet

When it comes to passing the driving test, there are countless factors that can play into the likelihood of success—from how many lessons you’ve taken to how much practise you’ve had outside of lessons to how prepared you are for your big day. Whilst we believe that good results are entirely down to the individual learner, we do understand that some learners like to look at what other factors might increase their chances of passing. A popular query that many learners have is whether there’s a best time of year to take your driving test.

We’re going to look at pass rates for learner drivers in the UK on a monthly basis to see whether there is, indeed, a best time of year to take the driving test. We’ll also discuss why pass rates don’t really matter in the long run.


What do the stats say?

In order to find out whether the time of year you take your practical at can increase (or decrease) the likelihood of you passing your driving test, we had to consult the experts: the DVSA. More specifically, we looked at their pass rate data for 2018.

Let’s take a look at what we found in the chart below…

pass-rates-in-2018-sorted-by-month

By looking at the above data, we can see that there are three distinct peaks in pass rates:

  • April: 46.2%
  • August: 46.3%
  • December: 46.0%

Before you start booking your practical test for one of these months, you might want to take a closer look at the figures. Whilst pass rates are higher in these months, it’s not by a drastic amount. Don’t see it? Well, let’s compare these pass rates to the month with the lowest pass rate. November’s 45.2% pass rate is only 1.1% lower than the figures for the ‘best’ month. It’s pretty marginal when you think about it. Wondering how pass rates might differ between male and female drivers? Let’s take a look!

Male and female pass rates by month:

male-and-female-pass-rates-for-2018-by-month

The first thing you probably notice when you look at the chart above is the big gulf between male and female pass rates. Indeed, as we’ve discussed in our driving test pass rates article, male learner drivers have a much better chance of passing the driving test than their female counterparts. It’s not all bad, though—female drivers are better at the theory test and they’re safer on the roads once they’ve passed the driving test.

As for whether there’s a better time of year to take the driving test, male and female pass rates show the same slight peaks in April, August and December:

  • April: 50.1% (male) and 42.7% (female)
  • August: 50.2% (male) and 43.0% (female)
  • December: 49.9% (male) and 42.5% (female).

So, why are pass rates ‘higher’ in these months?

Interestingly enough, we don’t really have much of an explanation here. The months in question don’t exactly share the same type of weather, so we can’t just chalk it up to learners taking their tests in better conditions. Additionally, the differences between pass rates are so marginal, that they could just be statistical blips.

Before you start stressing out and trying to reschedule your practical test to coincide with one of these months, we’d like to explain why pass rates don’t really matter.


Why it doesn’t matter when you take your driving test

Cartoon woman in red car with L plates driving past a cityscape

Though pass rates are a big area of interest for countless learner drivers, we’ve found that they’re usually counter-productive. That is, learners get so pre-occupied with figures that they convince themselves that they won’t be able to pass because they’re the wrong age or not near a test centre with a high enough pass rate. Whilst it’s certainly interesting to see how your age, gender and location might affect pass rates, you shouldn’t let yourself dwell on it too much.

Instead of taking a train up to rural Scotland to take your practical at one of the test centres with a higher pass rate, why not make sure you’re learning at a pace and style suited to you?

Learn the right way with PassMeFast

If you’re intent on fighting the stats and passing your driving test as soon as possible, PassMeFast might be the perfect solution. Our intensive and semi-intensive crash courses are ideal for improving your chances of passing. By learning to drive in a matter of days or weeks, you’re able to build up your muscle memory quickly and retain the driving skills needed to pass the practical test. This means you’re not wasting any of your precious time trying to refresh what you covered in the lesson before.

PassMeFast prides itself on using only DVSA-approved instructors who have been trained to a high standard to help learners with any level of experience pass their driving test. If that wasn’t enough for you, PassMeFast is also able to offer you a fast-track practical test that is guaranteed to be weeks or even months ahead of dreaded DVSA-waiting times. Plus, we work things around you, so you don’t have to worry about needing to take a week off of work!

Whether you’re looking for a beginner course or you’re only in need of a quick refresher, PassMeFast has a course for everyone. To get a better look at what’s on offer, take a look at our driving courses rundown. If you’d like to get the ball rolling today, you can give us a ring on 0333 123 4949 or book a course online.

Not sure which course would be best for you? Answer a few questions and our course recommender will tell you which PassMeFast course would be most suitable!

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FAQs

1. How many driving tests can I take?

You might be relieved to hear that you can take as many driving tests as you’d like—there’s no limit as to the number of tests you can take. You are limited, however, to having to wait 10 working days before you can book a new test after failing.

2. Do you offer a guaranteed pass?

Nope. Despite what you might have heard from other driving schools, there’s no such thing as a guaranteed pass. Instead of worrying about your chances of passing you should instead concentrate on your lessons—listen to your instructor’s feedback and try to practise outside of lessons too. You know what they say: try and try again!

3. How many lessons do I need to pass my driving test?

PassMeFast recommends that learner drivers take between 40 and 48 hours of lessons in order to get test-ready. Our beginner courses are ideal for preparing learner drivers to pass the driving test and take to the roads unsupervised.

4. What happens if I fail my driving test?

Believe it or not, the world does not stop spinning if you end up failing. Plenty of learner drivers fail their driving test. Instead of dwelling on it too much, have a look over the feedback sheet you were given after your practical test. If you need to work on a few areas in particular, we’d recommend taking a quick refresher course. And, when you’re ready, PassMeFast can book you a new test at a date and time to suit you.

5. How likely am I to pass the driving test?

Whilst we could list off dozens of pass rates and statistics for you to mull over, we don’t think it would be particularly helpful. What we will say, however, is that hard work pays off with learning to drive. If you put in the time and effort with your driving course and practise outside of lessons, you will get there eventually.

6. How do I go about challenging the examiner’s mark?

If you’ve recently failed your driving test and want to challenge your examiner’s mark, you might want to bear in mind that they are an expert in their field. Driving test examiners have to undergo training and frequent assessments to ensure they’re working to a high standard. As such, they know exactly what they’re looking for. If you still want to proceed, however, you can appeal your driving test—though, if successful, you’ll only get a new test (as opposed to a regrade).

7. Can PassMeFast find an earlier test date?

You bet we can! Our fast-tracking team are experts in hunting down test dates that are weeks or even months ahead of the test date you currently have. All you’ve got to do is give us a ring on 0333 123 4949, or book a test online, to get things sorted.

8. Do I need to wait for my full licence after I’ve passed before I start driving?

Once you’ve passed your driving test, you’ll be able to take to the roads unsupervised. Whilst it might take up to a couple of weeks for your new full driving licence to arrive, you’ll still be able to drive without it!

By Bethany Hall

Whether you’re a learner or a pro driver, Bethany is here to help. From defensive driving to the Highway Code, she’ll tell you everything you need know about driving. If she’s not on the road, you’ll probably find Bethany with her head in a book or binge-watching the latest TV show.

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