Before you can start learning how to drive a car, firstly you must be at least 17 years old and should have already applied and have been sent a provisional licence. To apply for a provisional licence online you will need to provide an identity document such as a current and valid passport.
This will need to be sent to the DVLA (Driver and Licensing Agency) unless you have a valid UK biometric passport. You will also need the addresses where you have lived for the last three years and your NI (National Insurance) number if you know it.
Your licence should arrive in approximately one week. You can also fill in form DI from a major Post Office. It costs £34 to apply online or £43 to apply by post.
Getting Ready for Your Lessons
Make sure you have scheduled in time when you can to do your lessons comfortably and with the least stress possible. You can buy a copy of The Highway Code online or from most bookshops. This is a set of information, advice and rules for all road users to abide by which had been prepared by the Department for Transport and the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency.
Although the usual age is 17, you can actually drive a car at 16 if you receive the enhanced rate of mobility payment, of Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
You must be supervised when you learn to drive a car and the "L" plates must be on display. You can be supervised by a driving instructor or someone else such as family member or friend. For the latter, they must be over 21, qualified to drive the type of car you are learning in (e.g have a manual licence to supervise you in a manual car) and have had their full driving licence for 3 years.
If you drive without correct supervision you can be fined up to £1000 and receive a six penalty points on your provisional licence - enough for you to lose your licence if you're still within the first two years of obtaining your provisional licence.
You must have a proper licence to book a Theory Test. There are two parts to this test:
- Multiple Choice
- Hazard Perception
You must pass both parts in order to pass your theory test. If you fail your test you can resit it after at least three working days. Car (and motorcycle) tests are £23 and are valid for two years.