10 Top Tips For Your First Driving Lesson
Throughout our childhood, we continuously talk about the time where we finally gain independence and can start to take driving lessons. The skills required to operate a vehicle tend to be those in which you haven’t really had to use before and having the ability to coordinate your body to move at different times can be a tricky task. If you are approaching your first driving lesson and looking for advice, here are nine useful tips for your first driving lesson.
Tips For Your First Driving Lesson
Everyone learns through different techniques and at a different rate, which means there is no pressure to smash driving the moment you step into the car. However, with these simple pieces of advice, your first driving lesson is guaranteed to be stress-free and most importantly, enjoyable!
1. Provisional Licence
So, before you can even consider booking your lessons, you will need to apply for your provisional licence, this will be the first thing your instructor will ask for in your first lesson. The advantage of a provisional licence is that, if you wanted to be extra prepared, you could submit your application three months before your 17th birthday, so you are ready to start lessons immediately. All applications are done through the GOV.UK website, they cost around £43, and you will need to provide proof of identity such as your passport.
To apply for your provisional, you must be able to see and read a number plate 20 metres away clearly; this will be the first thing you will be tested on in your first lesson. If you require glasses or contact lenses to do this, not to worry, you will still be able to take lessons, but you must always bring or wear these while driving.
3. Book Lessons At A Suitable Time
Some of us are early birds and love to start the day early, and others are night owls, who sleep in the early hours of the morning and wake up late. Either way, you should consider this when scheduling a time for your first lesson. Your driving instructor will try their best to accommodate your needs, if you can handle mornings then get your lessons done first thing, but if not, opt for lessons in the afternoon instead.
4. Get A Good Nights Sleep Beforehand
There will be a lot to take in during your first driving lesson, so you want to ensure you can maintain full focus and concentration throughout. Lack of sleep makes simple tasks considerably harder meaning driving will seem harder, you don’t want to put yourself off driving because you didn’t get that extra hours sleep the night before.
5. Wear Sensible Clothing
If you’re going to your driving lesson straight from school or work, you may want to consider bringing along a change of clothes, something a little more comfortable and isn’t at all restricting any movement. If you’re struggling with shoe choice, go for trainers. One of the hardest skills to grasp is clutch control and finding the perfect bite point; this will be made considerably easier wearing thin sole trainers. To avoid stress, arrange your outfit the night before.
6. Be Prepared To Drive
As strange as it sounds, many people presume that their first driving lesson will be all theory and talking with your instructor, although this does happen, you will also get the chance to drive. It won’t be anything major; your instructor will take you to a quiet place, normally an industrial estate, and then will show you the basics. The key piece of guidance for this is don’t expect to be an expert straight away, learning to drive takes time, you never hear of a pupil passing their test after just one lesson. Don’t get disheartened if the driving aspect doesn’t go to plan; practice makes perfect!
7. Understand The Vehicle
Your driving instructor will sit and go through all the different switches and features of the car, make sure you take as much of this in as possible. The more you know, the more comfortable and confident you will feel when it comes to having to deal with scenarios such as having to turn on windscreen wipers in the rain.
This advice related to any car you plan to drive, even when you have passed and had experience. No two car models are the same; there will be small changes that you need to make yourself aware of before setting off.
8. Ask Questions
The best source of information you will have throughout the entire learning to drive journey is your driving instructor. They would have most likely heard every question possible, and a key personality trait of instructors is patience, so don’t be afraid to ask any questions, even if you have to ask the same question more than once to remember. Get as much feedback as you can and use this constructively to further your driving skills.
9. Book Your Next Lesson
Book your second lesson and decide on a schedule with your instructor at the end of your first lesson, it’ll guarantee that you will continue lessons. Many pupils have a terrible first lesson meaning they only have negative thoughts related to learning to drive and will continue to put off booking more lessons. Throw yourself into driving and get your lessons over and done with as quick as possible even if it does become a hassle. Always make sure that you note down your lesson dates and timings to save confusion, you could even invest in a handy diary to keep everything together in one place.
10. Lastly, relax!
You have probably heard everyone you’ve told about your lessons say to relax and not to worry about them, but it’s only because its true. As mentioned previously, everyone learns at a different pace, so take your time learning and building confidence. Many people find that breathing exercises help them to calm down and stay positive in stressful situations, this can even be applied to driving. Give yourself some downtime after lessons to store everything you have learnt.
Most importantly, good luck!