Non-key worker practical driving tests cancelled

DVSA has announced that all driving tests that had been rescheduled due to the COVID-19 outbreak are cancelled.

In a letter sent to ADIs, DVSA also said that only training of key workers that have emergency tests booked should be undertaken at this time.

Rescheduled tests have been taken out of the booking system and placed on hold. Over the coming weeks, people who had tests booked can go online to a new system where they can choose and book a test slot most convenient for them and their trainer. 

This system has been designed to prioritise those students who have been waiting the longest for tests, as well as giving trainers and pupils a better opportunity to ensure sufficient training has taken place before the test.

DVSA said: “We will ask people in the backlog to go online and choose their preferred date and time. We’ll invite them to do this in batches, based on when their test should have originally taken place.

“We will contact you before we start this process, so you can make your pupils aware of what’s happening. We will also contact them directly with more information.”

The reason for the cancellations is that the government has not given the green light to resume testing. Driving instruction and tests will only restart when the government is confident that the assessment of risk warrants it.

The core challenges the agency faces before it can resume testing are:

  • Preparing guidance for driving examiners on carrying out driving tests
  • Making sure driving test centres are ready to reopen
  • Making sure PPE is in place
  • Understanding which driving examiners might not be able to return to testing straight away
  • Planning driving test schedules so that anyone who had a test cancelled because of coronavirus is considered a priority
  • Understanding how the situation might be different in England, Scotland and Wales

22 thoughts on “Non-key worker practical driving tests cancelled”

  1. There’s still no starting date and we would need at least 3 weeks to start retraining again we all will have to have time to train before testing can begin

    1. Andy Woodger

      I would agree that in fairness to test candidates a time of recap lessons would be good. Could I ask the DVSA to consider this when allowing tests to resume that time be allowed for lessons with the learners instructor, for example if we are allowed to teach from July 4th that 21 days later the first tests to begin. Could that work?

    1. Too right, if they weren’t on full pay and a guaranteed pension they’d be doing tests now. They don’t care about anyone but them. You can’t even phone them, if it was a business it would have them working from home. DVSA pathetic.

  2. Stu Mortimer

    Announced to who please? There’s no mention of this on the DVSA website or in my emails?

      1. Christopher hood

        I haven’t had any communication from DVSA since May. I would welcome any feedback.

      2. Gordon Collie

        I did indeed receive an email from the DVSA on Monday but it did not address Practical Driving Tests, only Theory Tests. It was entitled “Theory Tests to be rescheduled.”

      3. DVSA-ADI Stephen Hicks

        Have been an ADI since 2002 and just rechecked my e.mails ….. NOPE NOTHING ….. i have pupils that had tests booked in March again NOTHING in the way of rescheduling.

  3. They have no concern about business. Since the start they have provided little or no advice or guidance and the email that they put out last week said a lot about nothing. As long as the legionella is sorted we’ll all be safe – what a load of tosh!! They’re all furloughed so they won’t be rushing back. Typical government department shambles with no interest other than in themselves and no one as usual accountable for any decision or non decision making.

  4. The DVSA have no immediate plans to restart tests so let’s be honest, theres not much appetite amongst examiners to return. Cars are very confined spaces though arent they? So for ADI safety too, its probably not a bad thing to extend the delay. It’s the financial aspect which is most worrying. We are earning nothing, unlike examiners, and the self employed scheme has just one more payment to go, if, that is, you are eligible. Possibly 6 or 7 months with no income will cripple many instructors financially

  5. Spencer Neely

    5 out of the 6 points detailed could & should have been actioned & measures put into place over the last 12 weeks !!! This thing is not going away in the immediate future can’t fathom out why this organisation has not been more proactive poor poor effort & I believe total disregard for us trainers & their livelihoods “pupils”

  6. It is all about the examiners because they are employed by DVSA (a government department). We,as professional driving instructors are self employed,we run our own business (even on a franchise) and as such are not ruled by DVSA. They advise us of best practise for our industry, and how they are dealing with the situation so we can best inform our clients (pupils or fleet) of the situation.
    Having said this, it is about time DVSA respected instructors as being professionals, who without us where would they be. This works both ways!!
    Not once throughout this pandemic has ANY government department spoke of driving instructors. It is like we are 3 rate citizens, hidden in a corner, out of sight, out of mind.

  7. If all rescheduled driving tests have now been cancelled why haven’t pupils with tests booked after the 4th July and August not being notified ?

  8. The DVSA face exactly the same challenges as other businesses – how to manage people and premises.

    Where other businesses, though, have been planning for the last 3 months to enable them to be up and running at the earliest opportunity, it appears the DVSA have been doing very little.

    Other businesses have done their risk assessments, bought their PPE, trained their staff, adjusted floor plans and people flows etc etc. So they hit the ground running. They have to because without cashflow, they are finished as a business. No money, go bust. It’s a simple equation.

    The DVSA, however, doesn’t have the same sense of urgency as a “real” business. Being a Government funded department, it can take all the time in the world, take a nap, then take some more time. The DVSA won’t go bust, unlike a real business, or indeed, like the 40,000 ADI’s under it’s control. So no sense of urgency.

    What have the DVSA been up to for the last 3 months? One thing is certain, they clearly have an unfilled vacancy in their communucations department, because this has been, at best, poor. For the most part, the silence has been deafening.

    Look at the “core challenges”, the DVSA face, as detailed in the main article. Bear in mind that the DVSA have had exactly the same challenges as other businesses, and the same time to get their action plan sorted out, why have other businesses opened their doors, where the DVSA seem to be staring blankly into space?

    “Preparing guidance for driving examiners on carrying out driving tests” – after 3 months they should have an action plan for staff signed off and ready to go. Everyone else has.

    “Making sure driving test centres are ready to reopen” – a floor space is a floor space, whether it’s a test centre or a clothes shop. Many stores have now re-opened with all their social distancing measures buttoned down, staff trained, PPE in place, and so on.
    After 3 months, why aren’t the DVSA in a similar state of readiness?

    “Making sure PPE is in place” – all we have been hearing about from Matt Hancock is how many billions of pieces of PPE the Government have secured for the NHS. With the buying power of the Government, again, why, after 3 months, hasn’t this already been sorted?

    “Understanding which driving examiners might not be able to return to testing straight away” – are the DVSA saying that by now they haven’t got a handle on their staffing profile? Seriously?

    “Planning driving test schedules so that anyone who had a test cancelled because of coronavirus is considered a priority” – judging by the number of pupils who have had tests booked and cancelled multiple times, clearly the system is as robust as Track and Trace. If that is the case, we may be in for quite a wait.

    On the issue of social distancing in a car, I can’t speak for other ADI’s but the boot of my car looks like the supplies cupboard in a GP surgery. Masks, wipes, seat covers, hand wash etc. I even have a forehead thermometer.
    The inside of my car must be as clean and sanitised as the inside of an ambulance, if not cleaner.

    Yes, I understand the argument about personal space in a vehicle, or lack of it, but the lack of social distancing on a packed tube train seems to be conveniently glossed over. There are numerous other examples.

    If I were to choose a place to be – either a clean, well ventilated car, with just 2 people both wearing face coverings, or the alternative, a packed tube train full of strangers with all surfaces being touched or sat on by numerous people, I would choose the car every time. Wouldn’t you?

    With the wider business world hitting the ground running, why don’t the DVSA appear to have left the starting blocks yet?

    At this rate, pretty soon there won’t be much of an industry left for the DIA to represent.

    Just a thought.

  9. Jacqueline Dillon

    I have not received any letter regarding this. Personally i think we ADI have been left in the dark. We are the ones losing business and an income. Yet its all about the Driving Examiners who no doubt are being paid. Lack of information has been a disgrace

  10. R Hartshorne

    I agree with A Gordon everyone talks about tests but we need catch up training time first


    We need to have some guidance as to when we can restart work. Luckily for me I’m financially stable but so. E instructors have to put food on the table and bill to pay. Please give us some idea

  12. David Lowe ADI

    All we want is a date when we can start training. By the way we are here you know, wouldn’t be many examiners without us.

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