How Many Attempts to Pass the Driving Test in London?

As a learner driver, you might be wondering how many attemps it will take for you to pass a DSA driving test in London, especially if you are taking it in a manual car as oppossed to automatic (not having to worry about gear changes particularly when approaching junctions does make life much easier for a nervous inexperienced driver)?

70mph dual carriageway on london driving test A1

Now there are mainly 2 types of provisional licence holders who will be trying to get a full UK driving licence:

  • Those who learnt to drive from an absolute beginner in London
  • Those who learnt to drive somewhere else including foreign international licence holders with many years of driving experience.


If you are in the first category, then it is much easier for you to pass the driving test first time if you have the right instructor, follow their advice during your preparations and don't try and cut corners by taking the test earlier than you are fully ready. Personally 90% of my pupils in this category achieve this goal as long as they follow the personalised training program devised for them.

If you are in the second category, my experience as an approved dsa qualified insructor is that many candidates seem to ignore my professional opinion (especially foreign licence holders who tend to pass the theory without any issues and think the same will happen during the practical car assessment) and the result is mostly a failure (there will always be some who luckily pass) not because they are generally unsafe, but more due to a lack of understanding of the DSA driving test requirements when it comes to driving in the UK.

Turn in the road exercise on the driving test in London

For many of these people, bad habits is a major cause of failure, and they usually think that taking a 1 or 2 hour driving lesson is enough to get rid of many years of bad driving skills but you can not put a show on for 40 minutes, you will be caught out commiting a serious or major fault sooner or later not because you want to, but due to the strict DSA requirements.

So if you want to reduce the number of attempts it will take to pass the driving test in a typical London centre, consider which category you fall in, find a good and trustworthy instructor and follow their advice on how to go about preparing yourself.

Hendon Test centre Information