Last Updated on January 10, 2023

First driving lessons can be a daunting thought for some. It can be hard to picture First driving lessons can be a daunting thought for some. It can be hard to picture yourself sitting in the driver’s seat being in control of an actual car!  There can also be the added peer pressure around getting behind the wheel of a car for the first time, this normally comes from friends, but could also be from colleagues and sometimes even family.

If you’re about to learn to drive, or you have your first lesson on the horizon and you feel anxious, don’t worry, you’re not alone. In this article, we share our top 10 tips to make that all important first driving lesson go as smoothly as possible and ensure you’re on the road to driving freedom.

1. Speak to Your Driving Instructor before Your First Driving Lesson

In a previous article, we covered what we believe makes a good driving instructor. In that article, we discussed how customer service is one of the most important factors. Simply speaking to your driving instructor before your first driving lesson will undoubtedly make that first driving lesson a little less daunting.

If you would prefer not to make a phone call to your driving instructor, often a text or WhatsApp message will do the trick and calm your nerves.

Still, searching for the right driving instructor? Check out our handy Find an Instructor app.

2. Don’t Forget Your Provisional Lic2. Don’t Forget Your Provisional Driving Licence

Whether you’re eager, or anxious, to get behind the wheel and start learning to drive, you must remember to bring your provisional driving licence with you on the day of your first driving lesson.

Your driving instructor will always ask to see your provisional driving licence before you commence your first driving lesson.

If you have any questions about applying for your provisional driving licence, check out our Ultimate Provisional Licence Guide. If you haven’t yet applied for your provisional licence you can do so on the DVLA website.

3. Study The Highway Code

Getting to grips with the basics of the Highway Code is an important step to getting an understanding of the rules of the road. Mentioning some knowledge gained from The Highway Code, such as making sure head restraints are properly adjusted before setting off, may also impress your new driving instructor.  

If you start learning the basic rules of the road, then you’ll be much more relaxed and confident ahead of your first driving lesson.  

Make sure you get a head start on learning to drive with Collingwood Annual Learner Driver Insurance .

4. Wear Comfortable Clothing

There would be nothing worse than to take your first driving lesson wearing an outfit that isn’t comfortable. You’ll of course be sitting still for long periods of time, so wearing uFor your first driving lesson, you’re going to be sitting still for long periods of time, so we recommend wearing comfortable and loose-fitting clothes. Whilst we recommend wearing comfortable and loose fitting clothes, we also strongly recommend you dress accordingly for the weather.

5. Wear Practical Footwear

As well as appropriate clothing, you will need to wear practical footwear. In your first driving lesson you’re going to be getting to grips with using the pedals, including the accelerator, break and clutch (think A B C). Be sure to wear practical flat soles shoes or trainers and try to avoid wearing heels, flip flops, platforms or wedges. Of course, stalling a car in your first driving lesson is common, at least it won’t be because of your shoes…

6. Wear Your Glasses or Contact Lenses if You Need Them

If you normally wear contact lenses or glasses, be sure to wear them in all of your driving lessons. One of the first things your driving instructor will do is test your eyesight with a standard sight test. It’s worth bearing in mind that you will also need to do a driving sight test when taking your practical driving test.

The sight test requires you to read a registration plate from a distance of 20.5 meters, which is around 5 car lengths. If you don’t require glasses and you’re not sure whether your vision would be impaired, getting your eyes tested ahead of your lesson could be a good head start.

7. Turn Up on Time and Well Rested

It might sound obvious, but if you‘re tired you won’t be able to focus. In fact, driving while tired is dangerous for every driver, from seasoned drivers to those heading out on their first driving lesson. As a new learner driver, you need to make sure you turn up to your lesson well rested to maximise your concentration.

If you aren’t on time it can negatively impact your lesson in 2 ways. Firstly, your instructor will likely be annoyed, which is going to start the relationship off on the wrong foot. Secondly, it will likely you make anxious and stressed if you’re rushing to get out the door on time.

8. Ask Lots of Questions

Your driving lessons provide an opportunity to ask many questions on your journey to becoming a driver. Remember, no question is a stupid question, and your driving instructor will likely have heard them all.

As discussed earlier, learning The Highway Code is an important element of learning to drive, as is studying for your driving theory test. It is equally important to remember your driving instructor is a professional and should be able to answer any burning questions you have.  

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9. Relax Before Your Driving Lessons

When you’re leWhen you’re learning a new skill, it’s important to remember that you are starting from scratch. Try to relax and don’t be too anxious about your abilities behind the wheel of a car. It is normal to stall a car and you’ll likely make a few novice mistakes during your first driving lessons. Remember, you’re on a journey to becoming a driver and that isn’t going to happen overnight. Some days will be better than others but your driving instructor will keep you safe, and they’ll go at a pace you feel comfortable learning at. 

10. Enjoy Yourself – You’re Actually Learning to Drive!

Learning a new skill, particularly one as empowering and exiting as driving is going to change your life for the better. Don’t forget to have fun.

Learning a new skill, particularly one as empowering and exciting as driving is going to change your life for the better. Don’t forget to have fun while you learn.

Bonus Tip: A great way to start building confidence on the road is to learn with a family member or friend. Our learner driver insurance allows you to learn in your own or another car, has no curfews or black box, and can start from just 70p* a day! 

Get a Learner Insurance Quote with Collingwood

*t&cs apply and depend on underwriting criteria.