Getting Started | Driving Update 1

I currently don’t know what I’m going to title these blog posts, but I wanted to write about my experience with driving lessons whilst I’m in the process of learning. By sharing my experience, I’ll be able to share with you the highs and lows of taking driving lessons, my theory test and eventually my practical driving test. I’m thinking about making regular updates about my driving lessons and my progress every four weeks. It’ll be interesting to document my progress and reflect on this as well as sharing it with you!

For today’s blog post, I want to write about how I went about getting started with my driving lessons and my journey to starting driving lessons again for the second time. I initially started driving lessons in November 2017, just over two years ago now. I had a male driving instructor and it was somebody that a family member recommended. So, rather than looking around at other driving instructors, I went straight with him and it was okay. I had about 6 lessons with him averaging at about £23/£24 a lesson. 

Looking back in hindsight, I disliked his style of teaching and didn’t feel like I was progressing all that much (although I didn’t have that many lessons). Another thing I didn’t particularly like was that at the start of your driving lesson you be taking the previous pupil back to their drop off point, basically known as ‘piggy backing’. I can understand why he does this because he’s managing a lot of students so he was busy. However, it’s not a one-to-one lesson when driving instructors do this, it just felt a bit more impersonal. 

I stopped driving lessons with that particular driving instructor in January 2018. From then on I’ve put off driving lessons for almost two years, which is quite a long time. It took me a long while to actually start messaging new driving instructors/schools in regards to taking up taking up driving lessons again. 

To begin with, I thought I knew who I was going to go with based off the fact that I was initially going to go with a female instructor this time around. Someone had recommended a driving school to me a while back, so I messaged them at the beginning of August, but unfortunately they were struggling to fit around my working hours as I currently work full time. After that I felt a bit defeated because I didn’t have a back up. There’s so much choice for driving instructors out there and I wasn’t entirely sure who I wanted to go with. 

A couple of months later, I was recommended another specific driving instructor who works under a national driving school. Since I had been meaning to start driving lessons for a while at this point, I decided to just take the plunge and text the driving instructor despite the anxious feelings. If I didn’t do it then who knows when I would have taken the plunge. So, I’ve finally began driving lessons again in November, just over a month ago as I’m writing this. 

At present, I’ve had 7 hours worth of lessons and I’m definitely improving with each lesson. I’m currently learning in a Volkswagen (it’s either a T-Roc or a Golf, I’m not actually sure which). It’s a manual car but it has an electric handbrake which is just a switch which I think I’m finding easier than having a manual handbrake, but we’ll see how that goes.  

The main advice that I want people to get from this blog post, whether you’re looking to learn or you’re already learning, is to not be afraid to change instructors if they don’t suit you. At the end of the day you’re paying for tuition to learn a skill and you want someone that’s going to point out mistakes you make, but also encourage you and praise you. Learning to drive is expensive and you don’t want to be wasting your money.

Learning to drive isn’t easy and it’s a difficult skill to master. It can be scary to get behind the wheel and drive on main roads where it’s busier, but it’ll all be worth it in the end. 

If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments and answer as best as I can!

Ashleigh

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8 thoughts on “Getting Started | Driving Update 1

  1. As someone who is also learning to drive, I can’t believe your first driving instructor made you drop off the person from their previous lesson. Learning to drive can be super overwhelming as it is, without feeling judged by having someone in the back of the car for the first portion of your drive. I completely agree with what you said about choosing the right person; I waited a few months before mine could fit me in and I’m so glad I did. I genuinely don’t think I would have gained confidence as quickly as I had if I had gone with some of the other people suggested to me when I was looking.

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  2. I’m so glad you’ve found a driving instructor your happy with and you got the courage to carry on having lessons after a break. You should be so proud of yourself !! I love reading about how people are getting on with there driving lessons because I’m currently having lessons too and just love reading how other people are progressing. I’d definitely follow your journey learning to drive. I’ve also wrote blog posts in the fast about learning to drive if you would like to read them. Great post, I’ll definitely be reading more in the future 💗

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  3. I’m so glad you’ve found a better instructor for you, it definitely makes a huge difference depending on who’s teaching you! I think some instructors are just trying to drag it out to get more money out of you whereas others actually care about you passing. Good luck with your driving journey!

    Alice xx

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  4. My dad taught me how to drive, mostly. The last of my lessons was through RACV, an Australian Car Insurance company. The first thing my dad taught was to relax. He also taught me to think of other drivers as idiots, meaning that they and do make mistake and just to be wary of them making a possible mistake.

    You’ll find someone you’ll like eventually, male or female, I’ve had both. I also recommended not trying to rush to get to your P’s.

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  5. I tired 3 times over a 15 year period and until I found the right person it just didn’t work.

    I passed first time, very quickly with my 3rd instructor and it really did change my life x x

    Good luck x x

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