A 28-day wait before learners can re-book tests could be coming

If new measures are introduced then learner drivers may have to wait longer to re-book their practical driving test after failing.

Part of the changes to the test that the DVSA is proposing is aiming to discourage learners from booking their test before they’re ready.

53 per cent of learner drivers failed their first practical driving test in the last five years. The current rules require them to wait 10 days before re-booking, but the DVSA is proposing extending this period to 28 days.

Another change would be extending the notice period within which a cancelled test results in a lost fee from three days to 10 days. According to the agency, it will encourage learners who need more practice before their test to give more notice before cancelling and create more late-notice slots for learners who are ready.

The DVSA are also thinking about allowing the eyesight assessment to be carried out in different lighting conditions or by reading from a tablet in order to increase the flexibility of the test. This will allow more tests to be conducted on darker winter days, as well as address the fact that 61 per cent of new drivers say they do not feel confident driving in the dark and 35 per cent of road accidents involving young drivers occur at night.

The proposed driving test changes are subject to a public consultation, which is running until 11:59pm on 8 March 2022.

Chief driving examiner at the DVSA, Mark Winn, said: “With nearly half of all learners still failing their first car driving test, it is clear we need to do more to make sure learner drivers only take their test when they are fully prepared.

“These measures will help make sure learners who are test-ready can find appointments and give those who fail more time to get additional practice. Changing the eyesight test will help more tests go ahead in the darker winter days.”

5 thoughts on “A 28-day wait before learners can re-book tests could be coming”

  1. Currently 67% of my students pass at 1st attempt. But this is simply a statistic that can be used ‘prove’ whatever your point is. I have never presented ANY student for test until they are ready to drive safely unassisted. So why is my statistic of 67% not 100%? – it’s not because they weren’t ready for test as DVSA are trying to claim. Making it even more difficult to manage students test or cancellation will actually exacerbate the current dismal effort of managing a test booking system (by the DVSA!).

  2. Yes fully agree. Disadvantages a lot of drivers who are ready. Also do we want to get this country moving again with jobs etc or do Gov just want to put more obstacles in their way?

    If Gov are worried Drivers are not ready then state Dual Controls should be fitted in the Test car. That means drivers will go with an Instructor not parents. This would disadvantage some drivers who are ready, but can’t find an Instructor, so not perfect.

  3. All these changes is just a distraction from the fact that there is not enough test dates and so passing the problem on to the students. Test are being terminated when a student makes 1 big error and this is normally at the beginning of the test as students are nervous and so will make mistake earlier on. They also lose out on not having a full test, so is the DVLA going to refund them for an incomplete test. Their theory test was never extended after the lock down and so they need to take a test before it runs out, why don’t they get an extra 2 years extension which reduce the chance of trying to fit a test in a short time.
    Also with test date availability now a days what the chance they can rebook a test in 2 weeks? It is a six months waiting list and that is if you can find an available date to book in.
    What is the solution, well here are some suggestions:
    1. Extend all theory test dates by at least a year.
    2. Training for examiners
    3. Give the students some time to settle in before marking mistakes, if this means extending the test by a 5 minutes then so be it. You want to see them drive normally not on test condition.
    4. Add more test dates.
    5. Make it easier and quicker for ADI to rearrange date with their students.
    6. Employ more back office staff.
    These are some possibilities and if we tackle the heart of the problem of not enough test date then we wont need these proposals.

  4. How about the amount of days which you can reapply for a test is down to the amount of minor faults that occurred on the failed test . i.e. 1 minor fault you can apply for a test after 2 days. 14 minor faults 28 days before you can apply for another test . This more forensic approach to real ability would clearly be reflective of readiness for a test .

  5. Driving instructors getting blamed for pupils not being ready , it’s just nonsense. I don’t know any instructor who puts their pupils forward if they are not ready. As we all know things happen on test, nerves play a part.
    Whole test is frankly outdated, an assessment system of 3-4 hours of one hour sessions would greatly improve road safety with better drivers.

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