This is usually the most nerve-racking part of the driving test, but
remember, the examiner is not there to catch you out! They’re there to
test your competence and ability, and make sure you’re capable of
The test itself is about 45 minutes long, and is set out by the DSA.
The examiner will direct you along the route, taking in a variety of road conditions that can include country roads, busy towns or city centres, and dual carriageways. You’ll also be asked to carry out two manoeuvres from the list that you will have practised with your instructor (parallel park, bay park, turn in the road, or reverse into a junction), and you may also have to do a controlled stop. You will not be asked to do anything that you have not practised in your lessons with your Mint instructor. If it makes you feel more at ease, your Mint instructor can sit in with you during the test.
Pass or fail?
The examiner will make notes of any driving faults that you make. These are split into three categories – Minor, Serious, and Dangerous.
Minor – you can have no more than 15 of these, and none that happen repeatedly, or you will fail
Serious – you mustn’t get any of these, or it’s an automatic fail
Dangerous – the worst of the three! You mustn’t get any of these, or it’s an automatic fail
When you’ve finished the test, the examiner will tell you whether you’ve passed or failed, and will give you (and your instructor if you like) feedback on your driving. Whether you’ve passed or not, it’s really important to listen to the feedback, and apply it to your future driving – DSA examiners really know what they’re talking about when it comes to driving and their feedback is invaluable!
Your Mint instructor will help you to decide when you’re ready to take your practical test. They can book it for you, or you can do it yourself either online at www.dsa.gov.uk, or by calling0300 200 1122.