General Question

melly6708's avatar

What are some things to expect on a driving test for a license?

Asked by melly6708 (502points) June 1st, 2008

I’m going to be taking my license driving test soon and just wanted to know some tips to help me.

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39 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

Read the manual; that should give you some ideas.

exek1's avatar

Making turns and parking… Also use all the mirrors.

koesac's avatar

Parking (parallel and bay), reversing around a corner, emergency stops, turn in the road. Driving normally driving on a dual carriage way etc..

seVen's avatar

watch your ‘blind spots’

richardhenry's avatar

I heard about a testing officer who would offer the driver a piece of chewing gum just after setting off, in order to catch them out on taking a hand off the wheel and looking away from the road. I don’t know if it’s true, but I’m sure there’s the occasional bad egg.

autumnofage's avatar

At least where I lived it was an automatic fail if you didnt look over your shoulder when going into a bike lane to make a turn.

TheHaight's avatar

I failed by not completely looking left and right at a stop sign. Also, left turn without an arrow freaked me out and I lost points on it. And of course, parking and backing up along the curb without hitting it, or doing it cricked. Good luck!

exek1's avatar

yeah make sure you dont hit the curb.
And look left and right at the stop signs.

row4food's avatar

I remember it not lasting very long. It is over very quickly. Maybe 10 mins max.

themherme's avatar

Take your time! Practice commiting to your lights and your turns. Use your signals, and parallel park. And don’t forget to check your mirrors. GOOD LUCK!

wizard's avatar

1, steer smoothly
2, start braking well ahead of where you must stop—to avoid “surprises” (that goes for mostly every-day driving, but works well during the test to stay status-quo
3, always check for potential hazards, check your mirror frequently.
4, notice everything your testing officer does, they do many things to catch you off guard, or to find a “skipped section” you totally forgot.
5, your driving test will last about 20 minutes, it will consist of maneuvers you will encounter while driving such as straight-line backing, lane changes and left-right turning.

Foolaholic's avatar

The two main things that my driving teacher told me were A) get very skilled at parallel parking, and B) always look predominantly in the direction you are moving. My father preferred that i use my mirrors to navigate while backing up, but the cop who gave me the test assured me that if you’re moving in reverse, you should be physically looking out the back window.

Seesul's avatar

Go as early in the day and in the week as possible. They are very tired of testing on Friday afternoon.
Some states don’t require parallel parking.
Ask friends who have recently taken the test, or your driving instructor, the route used and practice it.
Take a deep breath and relax as much as possible.
If you have more than 1 DMV in your area, and can choose, find out which one has the best testing route. We have 2 in our immediate area and one is a LOT easier.

koesac's avatar

@wizard: I agree with all of that apart from point 4, if you pay too much attention to them you are distracted and not paying enough attention to the road. It is true that the great majority of driving instructors are not out to trick you or make you fail. It is m=not nice for them to have to fail you.

wizard's avatar

No that’s a good thing, it means they are just making sure that you read up on the manual. I don’t think there are many if any instructors that are out to fail you.

gailcalled's avatar

As a female, you have a statistically better chance of passing. Often, Instructors like to scare and fail teen-aged males, since so many of them have accidents, often involving alcohol, after getting their licence.

Also, I’d recommend that you dress in a conservative manner -

melly6708's avatar

i was at the bank backing out of the parking lot and this big truck started back up and i beeped like about 10 times and he wouldn’t stop..THEN he went back in and stayed there.. seriously!


wizard's avatar

Good luck melly! =]

exek1's avatar

yeah DRESS IN A CONSERVATIVE MANNER!!!!!!!! I agree with @gailcalled

Seesul's avatar

I beg to differ, Wizard. We have one in our area that has a reputation for failing as many as she can. If you even say hello to her when starting the test, she yells at you and tells you to not fraternize and will take off points for that. To say if any of any profession is inaccurate because they are humans as well and no profession is without it’s great people nor it’s bad apples. That’s why I suggested asking around, our other DMV has just the opposite when it comes to employees.

Good point on the alcohol and males, gail. I think in California, the cell phone issue has equalized out the rate, and more for females. Yes, stereotype, but I saw an equal alcohol problem with females and males in recent years, so maybe they are covering both sides now. California has handsfree phone law, effective July 1st and the law is stricter for new teen drivers.

Cardinal's avatar

We hasd a tester near here (Washington state) that would scream STOP somewhere in the test. You better rect appropriately and stop immediately!!

melly6708's avatar

hah wow i hope it goes good.. i mean if i could drive good with my MOM in the car then i think i could do it.. she keeps talking and talking and with all her hand gestures.. i think i can manage

exek1's avatar

Yeah listen to all the people giving you tips and advise, it’ll help but study you manual too. Yeah when you take the test its not gonna be your mom….. You will get nervous so try not to PANIC and concentrate. Study study good.

Seesul's avatar

Do you mean Compton, CA? If so, are they still requiring you to parallel park as part of your test there? I thought CA dropped it for other than commercial drivers years ago. Might be something to find out. You should learn how, but if you verify for sure that you aren’t going to be tested on it, then it is one less thing to worry about.

melly6708's avatar

yeah compton, california.. well i hope that they did

gailcalled's avatar

OTOH, every driver needs to know how to parallel park.

exek1's avatar

so they don’t require parallel parking???
you should still learn how to parallel park.

melly6708's avatar

yeah im going to learn how to parallel park.. ORCOURSE

XCNuse's avatar

Always remember: the bigger boat rules.

(unless it’s against a pedestrian, but.. typically boats don’t have to worry about pedestrians lol, so thats just a special case for cars)

Seesul's avatar

Verify it, maybe put the question up as a separate fluther question. I tried to find the answer online and couldn’t come up with it. Ask around if anyone recently you know has taken it there. Or better yet, call and ask.

I’m sure you’ll do fine, but, if by some small chance you don’t pass it, don’t take it as the end of the world. Just practice a little more and take it again if you need to. Take it as a learning experience and go over what you got points off on and work on that area. Just practicing in the LA area is experience some people will never have. Best wishes.

melly6708's avatar

yeah im going to take it this weekend to see what else i can work on if i fail it. if i pass then that would be even better.. ive practiced every weekend and i think im ready for the test…ive read the manual and get advice from everyone i know. so i hope all that helps me

Seesul's avatar

And yes, like i mentioned before, you should learn, but it just might take some stress off if you didn’t have to worry about it on the test and I’m trying to reduce stress for you. It’s much easier doing it when you don’t have someone watching whether you’ll be able to do it or not.

nagilum's avatar

Jus kiddin

melly6708's avatar


i really want to pass… i already have the car and everything.. i just need the license..

if i pass the test then i’ll be able to go where i want.. because my parents dont like to take me places .. im pretty much a prisoner in my own home.. so i HAVE to pass!!!

XCNuse's avatar

Really though, it isn’t hard, you sit in your car for literally 10 minutes or less, and just drive normally (actually, drive “correct”, not .. normally). Full and complete stops, look both ways.. it isn’t hard trust me, I thought I was going to fail, and I made juuuuust under a perfect score, and that’s just because… well they can’t give perfect scores, no one is a perfect driver!

Going down roads just make sure you check all your mirrors every few seconds (or at least move your head like you are), backing up make sure you put your hand on the headrest of the passenger seat and look around

Adjust your mirrors to be correct before you get there! Heck, even drive around a little before you get there, that’s what I did.

no worries, it is easy stuff, good luck!

Just remember, 90% of the time the instructor is watching YOU, not how perfect you are between the lines, they are just paying attention to see if you’re looking both directions when you should be, looking out your mirrors like you should be etc.
oh, and don’t forget to check your blindspots when changing lanes! (and yes, that means turning around, NOT looking in your side mirrors)

melly6708's avatar

ok so i went to the dmv last tuesday and i got this jerky instructor and he failed me :( cause i got on the but anyways

i went today and got another lady and i passed!!

i have my license .. im so happy.. thanks for all the advise!!


XCNuse's avatar

hurrah, congrats!

Yes, I’d imagine driving up on a curb, and possibly running over pedestrians in the long run could make you fail your driving exam lol just a thought…

melly6708's avatar

i know.. but i didnt even get on it.. my tire just touched it… but w/e i passed thats all that matters to me :)

dann1's avatar

You can be much more confident about taking your driving test if you end up watching these videos before you do so:
You’ll know what to expect, so that its far less likely that you’ll fail the driving test.

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