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Coronavirus (COVID-19): Update from PassMeFast

As the UK recovers from the pandemic, PassMeFast is keeping a close eye on the latest developments. In this post, we will keep you updated on PassMeFast’s response to the coronavirus, and answer some common questions you may have regarding the impact on our services.


Current status

Last updated: 29/07/2021 08:18

Potential customers

Demand for driving lessons is still extremely high as a result of national lockdowns.

At PassMeFast, we focus on the completion date of your course, not just when you start. While the coronavirus backlog means that our course start times are slower than usual, the ace up our sleeve is our fast-track booking system and intensive courses.

You’ll still sit your test sooner with us, getting you to your destination of picking up your pink licence faster!

The current DVSA waiting times for practical tests are 6–7 months. We cut that in half. Our average course completion times for new bookings are 3–5 months, so you’ll be on the road quicker with us. PassMeFast is still your faster route to driving!

Book Now

If you need to pass your theory test, we can book you in for the soonest date possible. This is typically a couple of weeks after we start work on your booking. We use our fast-track system to secure your test, so you can move swiftly on to the practical side of things.

Passed your theory and need a practical test? We’ll book your fast-tracked practical while waiting for an instructor to become available. Once we’ve secured a test, the rest of the course will fall into place and you’ll be a fully licensed driver before you know it! Depending on the length of your course, we estimate average course completion of 3–5 months.

Unfortunately, we’re not currently taking bookings for fast-tracked practical tests on their own, but we’re still fast-tracking theory and practical tests for students that book a course with us.

Existing customers

During practical tests

On the 19th July 2021, the DVSA made the following announcement –

“Following the government’s announcement setting out plans to move to step 4 of the roadmap in England on 19 July, we continue to expect pupils to wear a face-covering during their practical tests unless they have a good reason not to. 

Good reasons are things like:

  • having a physical or mental illness or impairment, or a disability
  • wearing it would cause you severe distress

Please be aware that the testing of candidates who are unable to wear face coverings are conducted by volunteer examiners only, so not every test centre will be able to facilitate this testing.”

Please wear your face-covering for your practical test. If you are exempt from wearing a face-covering and haven’t let us know, please inform us urgently. We must let your test centre know when booking your appointment so they can make arrangements for you to take the test without a face-covering. The test will be covered by an examiner who has volunteered to take students without face-coverings, so there is no guarantee that they’ll be available for the test. If this is the case, your test may be postponed unless a mask can be worn.

During theory tests

The DVSA has stated that face-coverings are optional during theory tests. If you’d prefer to wear a mask, please feel free to do so. It’s also worth being aware that social distancing measures might not be in place at test centres.

During lessons

The DVSA hasn’t made a statement on wearing masks during driving lessons, but many instructors are continuing to wear them. Your driving instructor may also ask you to wear a face-covering during your lessons together.

Once you’ve been assigned an instructor, please check whether they require you to wear a mask before your lessons begin. If you’re exempt, we’ll do our best to match you with an instructor who is comfortable with you not wearing a face-covering.


FAQs

Existing customers

I have a booking with PassMeFast. Is it likely to continue as normal?

With driving lessons now available across Great Britain, we’re working to help all of our students to pass as quickly as possible. PassMeFast is prioritising safe working practices and complying with all advice from the DVSA and UK Government. There will be some disruption to courses as a result of backlogs from previous lockdowns. We apologise for the inconvenience and thank you for your continued patience.

I am currently taking a PassMeFast course, but have developed symptoms associated with COVID-19. What should I do?

If you have coronavirus symptoms, you must stay at home for a minimum of 7 days. Do not attend any lessons. Please inform PassMeFast as soon as possible, and we will inform your instructor. Your test will be resheduled for ASAP if you have any symptoms.

My instructor has developed symptoms associated with COVID-19. What steps should I take?

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19, you should self-isolate. Please inform PassMeFast as soon as possible, and we will put your course on hold.

What happens if I need to reschedule or cancel my driving test as a result of COVID-19?

There are currently no fees to reschedule or cancel your driving test, even at short notice, due to coronavirus. If you need to do so, please contact us as soon as possible.

My theory test is due to expire soon. Will the DVSA extend the expiry period in light of the pandemic?

Unfortunately, the DVSA have announced that they will not extend expiry dates. If your theory test expires, you will need to take it again.

Potential customers

I’m interested in learning to drive with PassMeFast. When could my course start?

We’re aiming to get all of our students on the road as quickly as possible, but are conscious of the delays created by months of lockdown. Though our wait times to begin your course may be longer than usual, we’re confident that we offer a quicker route to getting your licence thanks to our fast-tracking service. For details on when you could begin taking lessons in your area, please call us on 0333 123 4949.

Will the pandemic have an impact upon course times and test dates?

With students across the country having faced delays and cancellations, there is currently a large nationwide backlog for driving tests. PassMeFast is working to help secure the best possible dates for our students via our fast-tracking service. Though we envisage some short-term delays, we are working to help our students to pass fast.

General

What precautions are being taken to ensure that driving tests are safe?

Protective measures are in place at test centres and during practical tests to minimise the spread of the virus, and to keep both examiners and candidates safe.

Anyone taking a theory or practical test must wear a face covering. If you are taking a practical test and are unable to wear a face covering, you must declare this when you arrange your appointment.

Candidates will also be asked not to arrive more than 5 minutes before their specified appointment time. This minimises the number of people you could potentially come into contact with. Other safety measures being taken include:

  • Ensuring that examiners wear clothing that provides as much covering as possible
  • Requiring examiners to wash their hands before entering the public waiting area, wear gloves for the duration of the test, and avoid touching their face
  • Banning examiners from shaking the candidate’s hand
  • Preventing candidates from touching the examiner’s iPad, stylus, or any paperwork used
  • Checking the candidate’s signature and driving licence without the examiner physically handling it
  • Not allowing any accompanying driver or ADI to sit in on the test, or to listen to the debrief at the end
  • Stopping tests from going ahead if a candidate is unwell, or terminating the test partway through if the candidate becomes unwell during the drive
  • Building in extra time for each test to ensure that examiners are able to carry out all the additional precautions
  • Putting in place specific measures for the disposal of any Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as gloves and wipes

Candidates must clean their car before the test, including tidying away any unnecessary items and wiping down the dashboard and car controls. During the test, at least one window on each side of the car must be open. The DVSA permits any combination of windows—e.g., one at the front and one at the back. It is therefore advisable to wear weather-appropriate clothing.

To minimise the amount of time spent in the car, tests will be curtailed in the event that a candidate fails the test partway through. Additionally, you will need to exit the vehicle at the end of your test to receive your feedback. The driving test itself will be carried out as normal, including general and independent driving sections, reversing manoeuvres, “show me, tell me” questions and an eyesight check.

I’ve already been vaccinated against COVID-19. Do I still need to wear a mask during lessons and tests?

Yes. In Scotland, it is the law that you must wear face coverings during lessons and upon arrival at test centres. In England and Wales, this is not a legal requirement, but you should still do so unless you are exempt.

Should I take a COVID-19 test before my driving test?

The government is advising candidates to do so wherever possible. In England and Scotland, rapid lateral flow tests are available to order on-demand; in Wales, a collection service is available. Useful links can be found below:

Should I call the DVSA if I have any questions about driving tests or test centres?

The DVSA is likely to be experiencing a very high number of calls. Avoid calling them where possible. If you need to get in touch, contact them via Twitter.

Is private practice allowed?

Yes. Under the current rules, you may practise driving while supervised by a member of your household or support bubble. You may do so during both essential and non-essential journeys.

Can I still contact the PassMeFast office team?

Yes. You can continue to contact us by phone at 0333 123 4949 or by emailing your CX Adviser if you already have a course.

By Andy Boardman

Andy has been part of the PassMeFast Blog team from the very beginning. He'll provide you with plenty of useful motoring advice, helping you to get the most out of every trip. When he's not writing here, you're most likely to find Andy on the way to his next destination.

50 Comments

  1. Reply

    Elaine frawley

    Hello
    Could you ring me back to discuss an intensive driving course. I understand tests are postponed but i would like to start lessons. Thank you

    1. Reply

      Isobel Robb

      Hi Elaine,

      Thanks for showing an interest in our driving courses.

      I’ve passed your information on to our Sales Team, so someone should be in touch with you shortly.

      Kind regards,

      Isobel

  2. Reply

    Jane

    Hi there, am a student social worker, hoping to start employment in sep but on condition that I can drive. Any chance I can start to learn so when the test centres are open I can book my driving test then?

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Jane,

      At the moment, we’re only offering lessons to key workers. However, if you book in now, we can prioritise your course to take place as soon as possible once the current restrictions end. This means you should be able to pass well ahead of September. If you’d like to learn more, you can take a look at our list of courses and prices to see which would suit you best.

      Hope this helps.

      Andy

  3. Reply

    Georgina

    Hi,
    I would like to take an intense driving course I am currently a critical role worker and would like to pass by June. Please email

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Georgina,

      I’ve passed your details onto our sales team and they’ll be in touch in due course. Thanks for your interest in PassMeFast!

      Andy

  4. Reply

    Georgia

    Hi I’m a carer and would like to book lessons asap please for my job

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Georgia,

      Thanks for your interest in PassMeFast. I’ve passed your details onto our sales team, who’ll be in touch shortly. All the best for your driving future!

      Andy

  5. Reply

    Jonathan Ord

    Hello,
    I am hoping to be passed before University starts in September so I plan on taking my test by the end of August at the latest. If I booked with you can you guarantee me the lessons and a test before then and if I book but do not get a test in the allotted timeframe how do i claim a refund?
    Thanks

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Jonathan,

      As I’m sure you can appreciate, we aren’t able to guarantee exact course dates at present, as it’s still uncertain when driving tests will restart. We are, however, working to prioritise customers who pre-book with us, and will begin the process of fast-tracking your test as soon as the DVSA booking systems is reopen. If you’d like to chat to a member of our team to discuss this in further detail, please call 0333 123 4949.

      Andy

  6. Reply

    Tim Fenby

    Hi
    I am interested in booking my son onto an intensive driving course.
    Please can you contact me to discuss the options.

    Best regards,
    Tim

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Tim,

      Our team will be in contact with you shortly regarding your son’s course. Wishing him all the best with his driving!

      Andy

  7. Reply

    isabelle smith

    hello,

    Are student nurses classed a key workers?

    Thank you

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Isabelle,

      Student nurses are classed as key workers if they’re on placement.

      Hope this helps,

      Andy

  8. Reply

    Joseph

    I would like to undertake an intensive driving course, can you provide me with available dates and prices?

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Joseph,

      I’ve passed your details onto our sales team, who’ll be in touch with you soon. All the best with your driving journey!

      Andy

  9. Reply

    Yolande

    Andy Hi,
    I am a professional worker and need to obtain from the DVLA an assessment of ability to drive. Do you have a Driving Instructor who is able to test me and hopefully advice me of any improvements that are preferable. I look forward to hearing from you?

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Yolande,

      PassMeFast doesn’t offer driving assessments at this time. You would need to go to an organisation such as RoSPA or IAM RoadSmart to book an assessment.

      Hope this helps!

      Andy

  10. Reply

    Richard Turner

    My daughter has had 2 Driving test exams cancelled due to Covid-19, and has been promised she will get priority for booking a new date once it is possible. problem is she hasn’t been in a car since March and will need some refresher courses again to get up to speed. Driving test has been paid for she’s currently at home and could do a 10 hour refresher course or similiar be it more or less hours…. would you be able to help us?

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Richard,

      Thanks for your interest in our courses! A member of our sales team will be in touch shortly to discuss the best option for your daughter and to get her booked in.

      All the best,

      Andy

  11. Reply

    Jen Robinson

    Hi can you email me please regarding courses 15 hours to 25 thanks Jen think I’ve made contact before

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Jen,

      Thanks for your interest in PassMeFast! I’ve passed your details onto our sales team, who’ll be in contact with you soon. Best of luck with your driving!

      Andy

  12. Reply

    Paula Wright

    Hi, Andy, I’m a keyworker with the NHS, I was almost test ready at lockdown. Moving house in July need to be driving for my job. Can you help .
    Thanks

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Paula,

      Our team should certainly be able to help you apply for an emergency test and get on the road! I’ve passed your details onto our sales team, who’ll get in contact soon to discuss your course in further detail. Best of luck with your driving!

      Andy

  13. Reply

    Rachel Newell

    Hi , I need to pass my test asap I am a key worker I have had a couple test before but failed due to nerves. I did my last test 4 years ago and would need a theory as well .please could you give me some information and the best course for me ..

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Rachel,

      We should certainly be able to help you get on the road! I’ve passed your details onto our sales team, who’ll be in contact with you shortly. Best of luck with your driving!

      Andy

  14. Reply

    lee

    hello my son needs an intensive course during half term dates 24 oct -1 Nov 2020 with a test, he has already got his theory. we are based in Eastbourne.

    1. Reply

      Bethany Hall

      Hi Lee,

      I’ve passed your details on to the PassMeFast team and they should be in touch shortly to discuss your options.

      Bethany

  15. Reply

    Cheryl

    Hi i am looking to book in for an intensive course, i am a key worker and i am wondering if you will be cobtjnuing lessons for us ? Cheryl

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Cheryl,

      At present, the DVSA has not announced any plans to allow key workers to continue taking lessons during the lockdown period. However, we can certainly help you to get on the road when lockdown ends. If you’d like to chat about booking one of our courses, give our team a ring on 0333 123 4949.

      Hope this helps!

      Andy

  16. Reply

    Siddharth

    Hi Andy,

    I am a Keyworker, working in the NHS, and need to clear the Theory and Practical examinations ASAP. The usual booking portal is giving me the earliest theory examination in last week of December and subsequently it would be ages before I get a practical examination slot. Is there any provision for expediting the process, once the lockdown ends?

    Thanks!

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Siddharth,

      At PassMeFast, we always work to get our customers early theory and practical test dates. If you’d like to chat to our team about your requirements, then just call us on 0333 123 4949.

      Hope this helps,

      Andy

  17. Reply

    Munirudeen

    Hi,
    I am new to UK Bolton.I would like to get my driving licence. Please guide me .I don’t know the procedure.
    Thanks

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Munirudeen,

      If you’re looking to get your licence, you’ve come to the right place! We have a range of different driving courses available to help you get on the road. If you’d like to find out more, visit our prices page, or call us on 0333 123 4949.

      Andy

  18. Reply

    Andreea

    Hi, my fiance is supposed to have his theory test at the beginning of January, is still going on as we are in tier 3 now ? Thanks

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Andreea,

      Theory tests are still continuing in tier 3, so your fiancé should still be able to take his test. Please note that any further changes to the restrictions may impact on this.

      Hope this helps

      Andy

  19. Reply

    Lincoln Thompson Taitt

    Hi I wanted to know when are crash courses starting up again as I want to book a session.

    1. Reply

      Andy Boardman

      Hi Lincoln,

      We’d love to help you to get your licence! The best way to find out our current start times is to call us on 0333 123 4949 and chat to the team.

      Andy

  20. Reply

    Ashley Heard

    Hi i paid a deposit on 25th april and still yet to hear anything back… can someone contact me please

    1. Reply

      Sam Plant

      Hi Ashley.

      Thanks for bringing this to our attention. I’ve sent you an email with the next steps of your course — please let me know if you still haven’t received it!

      Cheers,

      Sam

  21. Reply

    Anamika Rai

    Hello, I am a key worker in NHS and I really need to have my licence as soon as possible. Are you prioritising any key workers so that I can rely on you for my practical test. I would like to book a 15 hours course with you if yo can assure me to have my driving licence as earliest as possible.

    Thank you.

    1. Reply

      Sam Plant

      Hi Anamika,

      Unfortunately the DVSA are no longer prioritising key worker tests, so it isn’t possible for us to do so either. Sorry about that.

      With that said, we’re still probably be the fastest way of getting your licence. Most DVSA test centres are fully booked until the end of the year, but our average course is completed within 3–5 months.

      If you give the team a call on 0333 123 4949 they’ll talk you through your options!

      Thanks,

      Sam

  22. Reply

    David

    Afternoon, hope you are all keeping well.
    I sent an enquiry form & left a number of messages on the 0333 … number about 4 weeks ago regarding an intensive course before starting university in September but I have had no response yet.
    How can I find out about course availability in my area?
    Regards
    Dave

    1. Reply

      Sam Plant

      Hi David,

      Sorry to hear you haven’t had a response to your enquiries!

      I’ll send you an email now and we can arrange a time for the sales team to talk you through you options.

      Thanks,

      Sam

  23. Reply

    Christine Haggarty

    I was wondering whe is the earliest that I can start an intense driving course, probably the 35 hour one.

    1. Reply

      Sam Plant

      Hi Christine,

      Our wait times are currently extended due to the covid backlog, so we’d look at getting you in for a test around 4–5 months after booking. Your lessons would probably start a couple of weeks before the test, depending on your availability/preferred lesson structure.

      You can find more information on our website. Or, if you’d prefer, you can have a chat with our team on 0333 123 4949.

      Thanks!

      Sam

  24. Reply

    Sean

    Hello Team,
    I am a key worker and need to drive for my job. I am quite anxious about the test as I have failed it once. How long is the wait time and can I get a call from the sales team?

    1. Reply

      Sam Plant

      Hi Sean,

      No problem, we can help get you on the roads ASAP!

      Unfortunately, the DVSA aren’t providing key worker tests any more, but we can still beat the standard DVSA waiting times. Most test centres are booked for around 6-7 months, and our average wait time is 3—4 months (depending on course length and demand in local area).

      I can see you’ve entered your contact details into our website in the last few days, so I’ll ask the sales team to give you a call ASAP.

      Thanks,

      Sam

  25. Reply

    Cheryl Peers

    Hi can someone Contact me to undertake an I tensive course. I am a nurse and need to be able to drive to keep my current job

    1. Reply

      Sam Plant

      Hi Cheryl,

      We can certainly help out! Can you give us a call on 0333 123 4949 so we can discuss your timescales and availability, please?

      Our team will run you through how everything works and get you booked in for ASAP.

      If you’d prefer, you can chat to us on Facebook.

      Looking forward to helping you get your licence!

      Sam

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