Everything You Need to Know About the Driving Theory Test

It’s 24 years since the driving theory test began striking fear into the hearts of learner drivers. But while it’s always met with trepidation, it’s nothing that a little bit of preparation can’t handle. The driving theory test isn’t there to trip you up. It’s simply there to make sure that you’re safe to be on the road by the time that you pass your practical test.

So, what do you need to know to face your theory test without fear?

Everything You Need to Know About the Driving Theory Test

How can I book my driving theory test?

To book your DVSA driving theory test you just need to visit the Government webpage. Make sure that you’ve got your provisional driving licence number to hand. And you’ll need a debit or credit card to make payment.

The DVSA is willing to make reasonable adjustments for those with special needs – longer test time can be arrange, for example. But you do need to make sure that you inform them of any potential issues when you book your test – and provide proof. So, take your time to read all the information and don’t skim any of the questions!

If you don’t have an email address, you can book over the phone, by calling: 0300 200 1122.

How much does the driving theory test cost?

UK car and motorcycle driving theory tests costs £23.

Before you can apply to take your driving theory test, you will need to obtain your provisional licence. This costs £34 online, or £43 by post.

Where can I take my driving theory test?

There are driving theory test centres throughout the UK. All cities have one and most major towns. The easiest way to find your nearest test centre is to visit the Government search page.

What is covered in the driving theory test?

The driving theory test is made up of two separate elements:

  • Multiple choice – You’ll have to answer 50 multiple choice questions taken from the 14 official question categories set by the DVSA. These categories are:

Accidents, Alertness, Attitude, Documents, Hazard Awareness, Motorway Rules, Other Types of Vehicle, Road and Traffic Signs, Rules of the Road, Safety and Your Vehicle, Safety Margins, Vehicle Handling and Vulnerable Road Users.

  • Hazard perception – This part of your theory test involves watching 14 video clips of driving scenes. Each one will contain at least one potential hazard. Your test is to identify those hazards.

To pass, you’ll need to score at least 86% in both sections.

What happens after I’ve passed by driving theory test?

Once you’ve passed your theory test, you’ll have two years to pass the other components needed to gain a full UK driver’s licence. If you don’t manage to do that, then you’ll be back to square one and will have to retake your theory test – and pay for the pleasure. It’s pretty rare for someone to need more than two years to pass their practical test. But it’s a good idea not to book your theory test until you’re ready, just to be safe.

Last year, the theory test past rate was less than 50%. This is largely due to lack of preparation.  Take time to learn your highway code. Talk to your DGN instructor – ask them questions about where they think you need to focus. And pay attention in your lessons when your instructor talks about hazard perception. Do all of that, and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t pass with flying colours.


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