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The driver practical test

A driving test is designed to determine that you:

  • Know the Rules of the Road
  • Possess the knowledge and skill to drive competently in accordance with those rules
  • Drive with proper regard for the safety and convenience of other road users.

Prior to your driving test you should study the Rules of the Road (pdf), a booklet which is published by the Road Safety Authority and is available from bookshops, priced €5. It is also a good idea to practice driving as much as possible on all types of roads and in all types of traffic situations. This will improve your driving techniques and build your confidence.

On the day of your test, give yourself plenty of time to arrive at the test centre with a few minutes to spare. When your name is called and you are brought into the examination room, your test officially begins.

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The driving test

The driving test for cars lasts half-an-hour to 40 minutes and includes:

  • Questions on the Rules of the Road (including identifying road signs)
  • Demonstrating hand signals
  • Reversing round a corner
  • A U-turn in the road
  • A hill start
  • Driving approximately five miles in a variety of road and traffic conditions
Assessment of your driving skills

The driving test will assess your driving in the following situations

  • Driving in traffic
  • Moving off
  • Stopping Reversing around a corner
  • Starting on a hill
  • Turning about, to face in the opposite direction
Assessment of your parking skills

The driving test will assess your parking skills in the following situations

  • Road positioning
  • Overtaking and passing
  • Anticipation and observation
  • Use of mirrors and signals
  • Progress Speed
  • Compliance with traffic lights, road signs and markings
  • Use of the vehicle controls (accelerator, clutch, gears, brakes and steering)
  • Use of secondary controls such as wipers, de-misters, etc
 
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