Appearing for a driving test may seem like a challenge for most of us. Despite hours of training and preparation people tend to fail during their driving tests. This is quite common and there are very few candidates who get through the test phase without any reattempts. If you have a similar experience or if you are preparing to appear the test for the first time here are some tips that can help you in putting forth your best performance.
- Check the Rules and Regulations
Every state and country has a different set of driver’s manual that lists all the rules and regulations associated with driving. This includes all the traffic rules and how to interpret various signs and signals. As a basic preparatory step, you need to read the entire manual in order to familiarize with all the important rules regarding speed limits, safety norms, and road signs. Not just reading but remembering them during the test is also important so you need to handle the task depending on your ability to remember things when needed. Many people rush through this stage and give more importance to other practical aspects. This is a big mistake you need to avoid. This simple step can serve as a strong foundation for the rest of the preparatory work.
- Maximize your Behind-the-Wheel Comfort Levels
Everyone tend to practice more before their test but still, they end up failing because of their nervousness. To overcome this obstacle you need to train yourself until the point where you feel fully comfortable while driving. Besides more hours of practice, you need to learn to do it alone without your trainer guiding you every now and then. Driving alone without anyone’s help can augment your confidence and thereby make the whole process seem quite easier. You should realize that everyone has their own level of driving skills and you might need more hours of practice to feel comfortable behind the wheels. Make sure that you practice in the same car that you will be using for the test. Also, choose different types of lanes and streets rather than driving along the familiar routes that you usually choose. This is the most important and challenging part of your preparation that can certainly help you in getting through your test quite easily.
- Choose the Right Vehicle
Even though a good driver can handle any kind of car, you need to put some thought and effort before picking a vehicle for your driving lessons. This is a step that you should take one or two weeks before the test. If you are having the test in a day or two, it is best to take the same car that you have been using for practice. But if you have enough time and if the driving institute provides you the option you can try driving a different model before choosing a vehicle that seems more comfortable. You cannot rent cars using a learner’s permit so you need to depend on your trainer to help you in choosing a car that feels most comfortable while driving.
- Avoid Common Mistakes
Finding the common mistakes committed by learners, in general, can help you in avoiding them while appearing for your driving test. There are many ways to research this aspect. Your trainer should be able to help you in listing all the probable areas that can go wrong. You can also inquire with your friends and fellow students who have given their driving tests recently to get a better idea about the most common errors. This includes the mistakes committed during the road test as well as the oral/written test. Depending on the DMV rules for your state, you can search online for details about your driving test and make sure that you stay clear of all the easily committable mistakes.
- Attempt a Mock Test
Trying your skills with a mock test is a great way to judge your ability to pass the real test. Different states have different procedures associated with the driving test. So if you have a written test to clear, you can try attempting the previously conducted test papers. If you’re driving institute doesn’t provide sample test papers, you can find them online from social sites and blogs dedicated to driving. In some states, only an oral test is conducted. However, you can still attempt some mock tests you find online to locate areas where you need improvement. There are also some online forums that share details about the common questions and issues faced by candidates during their driving test. In short, there are endless options to explore. The more you prepare, the better you perform.
- Hone your Observation Skills
Good driving is all about strong observation and complete concentration. Whenever you are driving you should pay your entire attention to the street ahead of you. Things become more challenging when you come across intersections, turns, and crossroads. These are the areas where your observation skills can help you in performing like a well-experienced driver. The test administrator will check your level of observation while driving. So make sure that you check the mirrors frequently not only to convince your test administrator but also to keep a track of other vehicles on the road.
- Follow the Speed Limits
There are different speed limits to be followed when you are driving on a busy road. Also, you should pay attention to the traffic signboards that specify the permissible speed limits. During a driving test, people miss out on such small things owing to nervousness. The day before your test you need to practice driving with special attention to speed limits. You should ask your trainer to take note of the speed levels and practice until you are in full control of the recommended speed. Note that in an attempt to follow the speed limits you should not reduce the speed beyond the prescribed lower limit. If you are too slow it would seem unprofessional as a driver. And if you are driving on a busy street you should be more careful about maintaining an average speed.
- Feel Confident
There are many people who drive well during the practice sessions but mess up while driving for the test. This is a common phenomenon that can happen when you tend to be nervous. It is natural to feel conscious about your performance when someone is watching over keenly. But you need to prepare yourself to feel fully confident as a driver. If you have practiced well and have done around 60 to 65 hours of driving for the entire duration of your training program you need not worry about failing. The fear of underperformance can only affect those who haven’t prepared well. So make sure that you spend enough time on practical and theoretical lessons so as to perform with confidence.
- Check the DMV Website
Before appearing for the test you should check the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) website related to your state. There, you will be able to find lots of important information regarding the basic requirements of a driving test. This includes the list of important driving skills that would be assessed during the test. The site also provides rules regarding reattempts and options to reschedule or postpone your test. The site can also help you in learning the requirements associated with the vehicle you choose for the test.
- Know When to Stop
There are a few instances during a drive wherein the driver has to slow down and pause for a few seconds. This includes turns and crossroads where you have to check if it is safe to proceed before speeding up again. Also, while exiting a driveway you need to stop for a few seconds to check the road for any vehicles approaching in your direction. Also, make sure that you do not stop for more than a few seconds. Whenever there is a stop sign avoid a rolling stop. In this context, timing is very important and you need to practice it well before appearing for the test.
- Practice the U-Turns
U-turns can be quite challenging if you lack enough practice. You should practice it at different spots so as to learn the process quite well. Even in a small lane, you should be able to steer your car smoothly to turn around and drive back. While performing the turn if there are other vehicles on the street you should be quick and careful. Also, check if there are any road signs that indicate the drivers to avoid a U-turn. Before you appear for the test, you should realize that being a good driver is more important than merely passing the test. Your driver’s license proves that you have learned driving but the real test comes when you practice it on your own. You should try to be a good driver not just for passing the test but for your entire lifetime. If you learn driving with this goal in mind passing the test would be much easier.