How to Recover from Driving Test Errors

It’s easy to make mistakes when sitting your driving test. That’s why you’re allowed to make up to 15 minor faults during the course of your test. No one is expected to be perfect. The problem for many learner drivers though, is that once they become aware that they’ve made an error, panic sets in. And while you’re busy obsessing over a single fault, it’s easy to make many others. And that’s how you fail your driving test. So, what can you do to recover from driving test errors?

Five Tips to Get Over Driving Test Errors

Embrace the ‘let it go’ mindset

OK, so we don’t want to come over all Frozen on you, but you can sometimes gain decent advice from Disney! If you are aware that you have made an error, whether it’s stalling or forgetting to check all of your mirrors, acknowledge it to your examiner, then let it go. Dwelling on the moment will just distract you. And there will be plenty of time to think about your mistakes after your test.

Concentrate on what your examiner is saying

It’s much harder to fix on mentally beating yourself up if you focus on listening to your examiner. And this has the added advantage that it will ensure that you don’t miss any cues, and should help you to avoid further mistakes.

Familiarise yourself with the common faults

When you’re sitting your driving test, a major fault will always result in a test fail. While avoiding most of these faults is a standard part of driving, it’s a good idea to know exactly what you shouldn’t be doing. So, do some research ahead of your test. That way, you can be fairly confident that if you haven’t committed a serious fault – ignoring traffic lights, poor steering control, not checking mirrors before turning, failing to make observations at junctions, poor positioning – you’re probably OK to stop worrying.

Do it right next time

The best way to lay to rest a driving test error is to make sure that you don’t repeat it. So, the next time that you need to fully turn the steering wheel, for example, make sure that you use the push-pull method, rather than crossing your hands. Once you’ve done it right, it’s easier to let it go.

Learn for next time

One thing it’s really important for learner drivers to know is that more people fail their driving test than pass. The average driving test pass rate in the 2022/23 financial year was 48.4%. So, if you fail, it’s always going to be disappointing, but it’s not the end of the world. And the best way to ensure that you get a better result next time is to listen to your examiner’s feedback. Then talk it through with your instructor.  They will help you create a plan, helping you to get to grips with the areas you struggle with under pressure.

Sitting your driving test can be really stressful. A lot of people go in with high expectations. And that can make the stress – and the self-recrimination when you make a mistake – even worse. But it’s really important to remember than driving test faults are usually something you can come back from. You have 15 chances to make minor faults without failing your test. And if you happen to make a major fault, then chalk it up as experience. It will make you a better driver in the long term.

If you’re looking for driving lessons in the West Midlands area, get in touch with DGN.


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Thomas Baugh

Thomas Baugh

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