So you are looking for a Driving Instructor?
we recommend CB's for all your driving needs! But what should you look for when
you are searching for Instructors?
You have decided you want to learn to drive, you have
applied for your licence and now you are looking for someone to show you the
ropes. What you are looking for is a DSA-ADI (Driving Standards
Agency - Approved Driving Instructor). These are the only people legally
allowed to charge for driving lessons.
You should check that they have an
licence displayed in their vehicle. This should be one of two types.
Green Badge - ADI. This is a fully qualified instructor.
They have passed all the tests and are constantly assessed and monitored.
b) Pink Badge - PDI (Potential Driving Instructor).
This is a Trainee instructor. They have been or are receiving
their training and are yet to pass the qualifying test. It will look something
like the badge shown here with Name and Photo on the rear. If you have any
doubts about your instructor contact the DSA.
Which instructor to choose? Check that they are familiar with your area. At CB's
we are experts on the Sevenoaks and Tunbridge Wells test routes, as well as the
surrounding areas - this means we know where the tests can be passed or failed,
and train you for success. So ask where they normally take their tests & where
they are based. Check that they provide FULL hour lessons and NOT 50 minutes,
some try to appear cheaper when they are actually not! Make sure you compare
like for like. Don't pay out for 20 hours before the 1st lesson. Have a 2 hour assessment or
starter session - or we offer a 5 hour taster - see how well you get on, what you
learn and if you like their style of instruction. Then consider saving yourself
some cash and book a bulk rate of lessons - maybe 10 or 20 hours. But only if
you are certain the instructor is right for you!
You may be surprised to learn that the national driving schools do not check
or maintain the quality of their instructors! So it doesn't matter who the
driving school is, but which instructor you get. A driving school is only as
good as the instructor that is teaching you. Don't take pot luck, choose your
instructor not the school. It is therefore often easier to use a local
instructor who has been recommended rather than AA/BSM/RED/Etc. potluck booking.
Also, beware of Self-Assigned merits such as What Car?'s"5 Star Driving
Instructors" - This means Nothing and is just a company tactic to make
themselves stand out. The qualifications to work as a 5 Star ADI are minimal.
You should expect to learn:
- How to control and operate a car
- How to read, understand and predict the roads and other road users
- Junctions, Crossroads and Roundabouts
- Dual Carriageways
- Clutch Control
- Parallel Parking
- Reversing Around a Corner - Left AND Right
- Turning in the Road
- Bay Parking
- Controlled Stops (Emergency Stops)
- Anything you wish to cover that is relevant to your future
on the road - a good instructor should teach the individual, in
the best way for them
These may not all be on your local driving tests but you should be competent
in performing them to succeed as a safe and positive driver.
REMEMBER: A busy Instructor will not always be able to answer his
/her phone while instructing. So leave some messages and see who gets back to
you. Don't take the first one to answer you. Ask questions and see who explains
things the best. Good instruction on the phone means good instruction in the
car! Time spent giving advice normally leads to an Instructor who cares about
A Note on Your Personal Safety: During the course of your
lessons it may be necessary for your Instructor to take action to prevent
incident. While there may be brief physical contact (touching your hand while
correcting the wheel) this should never be of a level which would make you feel
uncomfortable. You should never feel that your personal space is being
If you have any concerns about your Instructor you should contact the
DSA directly and report the issue. If possible include their ADI number, name,
company name and car registration. All ADI's have heard stories of situations
where inappropriate situations have been experienced, and we all hate to think
that it reflects on us as an industry. If you experience something that seems
odd, but you are unsure about it please take time to contact either us at CB's
or another local instructor to put your mind at rest. All Qualified ADI's are
CRB Checked and every effort is made by the DSA to remove unsavoury characters
from the profession. CB's support this 100%.
DON'T GET CAUGHT OUT - Some website charge huge booking fees for test booking
services. Use the links and prices below, Don't pay more!
Theory Test - £31-
Book Here /
Practical Test - £62-
Book Here /
If you decide to do driving practice in your own car you MUST make
sure you are Insured (See Collingwood Insurance below for short term learner
insurance) and that the accompanying driver is 21+ and has held a valid licence
for 3+ years.