Before driving on a public road, you will need a valid Provisional Driving Licence. The Driver & Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) application form (Form D1) can be obtained from your local Post Office but you can also apply online from the ‘Direct Gov’ site
You can apply for your first British provisional driving licence online if you:
- Are a resident of Great Britain
- Can meet the minimum age requirement
- Can meet the minimum eyesight requirement
- Are currently not prevented from driving for any reason
- Can pay by Mastercard, Visa, Maestro, Electron, Delta or Solo debit or credit card
- Have a valid UK passport or another form of identity
- Can provide addresses of where you have lived over the last three years
Pass your theory test
Once you have received your provisional licence, you can start taking lessons but you also need to think about taking the theory test. The theory test is is made up of two sections : a multiple choice and a hazard perception. Both of these need to be passed in order for you to get your theory test pass certificate. Once passed, you are then able to apply for a practical driving test but you obviously need to be able to drive well enough too!
You can get information on the theory test from the the Direct Gov site
You can also book the theory test online from the booking section on the same site
Booking your practical test
Ok, you have your theory test out of the way so when your driving has reached a suitable level, you can look to get your practical test booked. How far in advance you’ll need to book varies depending on the number of other learners applying at the same time. You should not just go ahead and book the test before checking that a car will be available first!
New Independent Driving section
In October 2010 a new ‘independent driving’ section was introduced as part of the practical test. During this part of the test, you will be required to follow signs to a particular location to see how well you deal without direction from your examiner.
There is now more detailed information on Independent Driving here.