Learning to drive on UK roads can understandably be a daunting prospect for those who move here from overseas. UK roads have a tendency to be notoriously congested, which when combined with the Great British weather does not exactly make for amicable driving conditions.
Driving in the UK for international licensees can sometimes prove challenging at first. But with a course of intensive driving lessons from a top-rated provider, you will be able to hit the road with confidence in no time.
When swapping an international driving licence for a UK driving licence, it is critical to first check whether your current driving licence from overseas is valid in the UK. You will find the information you need on the DVLA website, or you can contact a DVLA representative directly if unsure.
There are four steps involved in getting a UK driving licence:
- Ensure you are entitled to get a UK driving licence
You will need to meet the basic criteria to get a UK driving licence, which is the same for all UK citizens and residents. This means being over the age of 17 at the time of your application, being able to read a licence plate from 20 metres away and have spent at least 185 days in the United Kingdom within the past 12 months. You will also need to provide proof of your residency status in the UK.
- Apply for a Provisional Licence
Applying for a provisional driving licence is as simple as filling out the form on the DVLA website, after which you will need to send the appropriate identity documents to the DVLA office for verification. The cost of a provisional driving licence in the UK is currently £34 and you do not have to pass any tests to qualify. From the date the DVLA receives your application, it usually takes around three weeks until your new provisional licence arrives, at which point you can start taking driving lessons.
- Take Driving Lessons
With your provisional driving licence, you will legally be able to drive any vehicle you are insured on with a qualified driver who has a minimum of three years experience and is aged 21 or over, who is in the passenger seat at the time. This can be a great way of building confidence and getting used to UK driving conditions, but organising a course of intensive driving lessons also comes highly recommended. You are guaranteed to benefit from a course of specialist driving lessons to help you get used to UK roads and highways.
- Taking the Test
Last but not least, you will be able to take your driving theory test and subsequently your practical driving test just as soon as you feel confident enough to do so. The driving theory test fee currently costs £23 and must be booked online, while the practical driving test fee is priced at £62 plus the fees charged by your chosen driving school. Once you have successfully passed your practical test, you will be licensed to drive on UK roads and receive your new driving licence by post within a couple of weeks.
For more information on any of the above or to discuss learning to drive on UK roads in more detail, contact a member of the team at Manchester Driver Training today.