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New changes to the driving test came into force back in December 2017, and it’s important to understand the difference as a learner driver so you can be fully prepared. The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) confirmed the updates back in 4th December 2017, and if you are learning to drive at the moment, and wonder how this will affect you, here’s what you need to know.

What are the changes?

Basically, there are four main changes to the original driving test and they include a number of new elements involving all of the following sections:

The independent driving part of the test is 10 minutes longer

Previously, the independent part of the driving test lasted for around 10 minutes and this has now been increased to 20 minutes. During this stage, you will have to drive on your own merit without any directions from your examiner, but don’t worry, as you’ll be fully prepared for this by your driving instructor. This 20-minute segment is around half of the driving test which lasts for 40 minutes or so in total.

Using a sat nav

Another new element to the driving test is to follow directions from a satellite navigation system. The examiner will provide the sat nav and set this up for you, all you have to do is follow the instructions, and you’re allowed to ask the examiner for confirmation of where you are going if you’re not sure. It doesn’t matter if you take the take the wrong turn whilst using the sat nav, as long as you don’t make a driving fault whilst you are following the directions. Following sat nav instructions are applicable to four out of five driving tests, but one in five won’t use this element, the examiner could ask you to follow road signs instead. It’s worth preparing for both scenarios just to be sure.

You no longer have to reverse around a corner

If you passed your driving test before December 2017 you would have been instructed to reverse around a corner during the examination and also been asked to complete a ‘turn-in-the-road’ manoeuvre. These are no longer applicable. Instead, you will be asked to undertake one of the following reverse manoeuvres whilst you are under test conditions:

• Park in a bay – this can be either driving in and reversing out or reversing in and driving out. Your examiner will tell which option they want you to complete at the time.
• Parallel park the car on the side of the road.
• Drive, then pull up on the right-hand side of the road, reverse the vehicle for two car lengths, then rejoin the traffic again.

You will be asked to perform one of these manoeuvres during the test and will receive plenty of practice in the weeks before by your driving instructor.

Vehicle safety question

The final change to the driving test is a section where you will be asked a safety question about the vehicle you are driving. More commonly known as ‘show me, tell me’, you will be asked a tell me question, which involves you telling the examiner how you’d complete a safety task before you drive the vehicle, and a show me question whilst you are driving, where you explain how you would carry out a safety check (such as using the windscreen washers to clean the glass) as the vehicle is moving.

These are the four main changes that have been added to the latest driving test. There’s nothing to worry about though, you’ll be fully prepared for all eventualities by your driving instructor and these actions will be included as part of your driver training.

Here at Weekly Crash Courses, we ensure you receive the highest level of training so you are confident and fully prepared for your driving test. Book lessons with us today and for the best rates contact us here, or call Andy in person on 07788 973538.

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If this is your first winter as a new driver, you’ll notice there are a few new challenges to negotiate and for many people, this can be a bit of a shock. With icy roads, snowy conditions, freezing fog and reduced visibility, extra care needs to be taken when driving, and the condition of your car can be critical to how you handle these conditions, so even greater attention should be taken with maintenance schedules.

Before you take to a freshly gritted street, are you confident your car is in great shape and ready to tackle wintry situations?

Perform a few simple checks, and you can drive safely with confidence knowing your car is fully prepared and ready to embrace the worst of the wintry conditions.

Test lights

Daylight is reduced dramatically during the winter months where you spend more time driving in the dark and less time driving in the light. Visibility, in general, can be greatly reduced throughout the winter, so it’s essential you keep car lights in perfect working order to make the road ahead and your vehicle as visible as possible. Physically check all of your vehicle’s lights to make sure they are working and clear and free from dirt. Salt and grime from winter roads can make lights dull and hard to view, so clean them regularly, and replace any faulty bulbs as soon as you realise there’s a problem.

Check fluid levels

Oil, water and fuel are just some of the fluids you should be checking on a regular basis as a car owner. Windscreen washer levels need to be checked more often during the winter months as you will be using your wipers more, and also make sure you have plenty of antifreeze in your cooling system, to prevent the water in the system freezing. You can top up the coolant level through the reservoir in the engine bay and if you’re not sure where this is, check the owner’s manual, or simply ask a pal that knows where this is.

Have your battery tested

Batteries work extra-hard in the winter and the cold weather can really drain their life, so it’s essential your battery is working to its full potential to maximise the performance of your car. Weak batteries can die in the winter and this could leave you stranded in freezing conditions, but this is totally preventable. Have your battery tested to see if it’s holding its charge and there is plenty of life left in it. If there isn’t, have the battery replaced to prevent a breakdown in the future and you will have peace of mind throughout the winter.

Examine your tyres

Winter tyres will give you extra grip on slippery roads and provide you with the additional traction you need. You can also consider all-season tyres, just be sure you check them regularly for their condition or air pressure. Any signs of defects on the tyres such as bulges, nails, cuts or excessive wear should be addressed straight away, as this is simply not worth the risk. You can easily test the air pressure in your tyres at a petrol station forecourt, so there’s no excuse for running them under or over-inflated.

Pack a survival kit  

You never think you are going to get stranded in your car over the winter but it happens, and you hear reports on the news each year where motorists are stuck and need assistance. A survival kit would help you if you became stranded on an isolated road, and this should contain the following items:

  • Torch
  • Booster cables
  • Emergency phone charger
  • Blanket
  • Some chocolate or snacks to provide nutrition
  • First-aid kit
  • Snow shovel
  • De-icer to prevent windows and doors freezing solid

Winter is often the worst time for drivers, but if you plan in advance, and take good care whilst out on the road, it doesn’t have to be a nightmare. Take care of basic car maintenance to stay safe this winter, and if you have recently passed your test and want some experience of bad weather driving, a Pass Plus Course could be just what you need to improve your driving skills.

Find out more about this here at Weekly Crash Courses and contact us today, or to speak to Andy in person, call 07788 973538.

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Congratulations, you have your license and can now drive solo when you like. You’ve done exceptionally well to pass your test but the actual process of gaining driving experience starts right here, and it wouldn’t do any harm to book a pass plus test.  Statistically, young drivers under the age of 25 are most likely to be involved in an accident during their first year of driving. Get more training now and you can prevent this from happening, by learning some essential skills.

What exactly is the Pass Plus course?

Pass your test and it takes a while to become a confident and experienced driver. There are many principles of driving you won’t be used to, such as motorway driving or driving in bad weather for example. The Pass Plus Test is a specialist 6-hour course that addresses some of these issues. Book a course of this nature and you will be introduced to brand new driving experiences in a safe environment with a professional instructor sat beside you.

How does it work?

Pass Plus driving is a practical course designed to improve your skills and help you drive more safely.  You can arrange this through your ADI approved driving instructor and ideally, take it as soon as possible after passing your test.  The training takes at least 6 hours to complete and during that time you will be involved in a number of practical sessions. There is no test as such at the end of the course, but you will be assessed, and have to reach the required standard for all modules.

What types of modules does the course cover?

In total there are 6 elements to the Pass Plus course to raise awareness and build your confidence as you tackle different types of driving. Some of this driving will be alien to you and you might not have experienced this during your normal driving lessons. The types of modules include:

  • Town Driving
  • Bad Weather
  • Rural Roads
  • Night Driving
  • Dual Carriageways
  • Motorways

Pass Plus introduces you to all of these conditions, and at the end of the course, you will have a greater awareness of each principle in question.

What are the benefits?

After you have successfully passed this course you should feel more confident and have a greater awareness of driving in different types of conditions. The other massive benefit of passing a Pass Plus course is the chance to lower your car insurance. You can apply for a certificate which shows you have completed the course and present this to your insurer to see if they offer discounts. Not all insurers do, but it’s worth shopping around to find a company that does if you want to make savings on costly insurance.

Seriously, if you have just passed your test and want to gain experience, feel confident and make the cost of driving cheaper, a Pass Plus course could be perfect for you.

You can find out more about this here at Weekly Crash Courses and book driver training today. Simply contact us or call Andy today on 07788 973538.

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As a young driver shopping around for car insurance for the first time, you will have already noticed how extortionate some premiums are and also feel quite worried at just how much it’s going to cost you to finance a car in your first year. Finding affordable driving lessons is easy, you can book brilliant deals through driving schools such as Weekly Crash Courses, but it’s a different story when it comes to car insurance. Knowing some of the tips of the trade can help to lower car insurance costs, and here we provide a list of suggestions to bring down the price of your premium.

Choose your first car wisely

Spend a little time researching different cars to find the cheapest vehicles to insure for young drivers. The lower the insurance group the cheaper the car will be to insure so consider vehicles in bands 1 – 5. Some of the cheapest cars to insure at the time of writing in 2017 include the 10 candidates on this list:

  • Toyota Yaris
  • Kia Rio
  • Renault Twingo
  • Vauxhall Corsa
  • Volkswagen Up
  • Hyundai i10
  • Seat Mii
  • Dacia Sandero
  • Skoda Citigo
  • Ford Ka

We’d suggest you draw up a shortlist of cars that fall into the lower insurance category then get a quote for each model you like the look of and don’t be afraid to shop around for deals.

Accept the Black Box Policy

Black Box Policies use telematics to monitor how a car is driven and clearly track driver behaviour. As a safe and sensible driver, it’s certainly worth considering this type of premium as you can make a massive saving on insurance if you agree to have a black box fitted inside your car.

Look at the policy excess

Car insurance policies usually come with a compulsory excess which is a set figure the policy holder agrees to pay if they have to make a claim. You can sometimes lower the cost of insurance by agreeing to raise the voluntary excess figure at the start of the policy. Just make sure you have funds available to pay the excess amount should the unthinkable happen.

Make one payment

Spreading the cost of car insurance into manageable monthly payments might be useful but you can make a bigger saving by paying for the total cost of the car insurance in one yearly payment. If you can afford to do this, pay yearly for your car insurance and avoid any unnecessary interest charges.

Tempted to tweak the car? Don’t! 

It’s very tempting to modify your car when you get it by adding a shiny set of alloy wheels, sports exhaust system, and other modifications to improve the look and performance of the vehicle. Do this and you have to declare the extra features, otherwise, your insurance will be null and void. Think carefully before you modify your car. This can send the cost of your insurance premium soaring. 

Compare quotes for different levels of cover

As a general rule of thumb, fully comprehensive car insurance is normally the dearest option, whereas third party, fire and theft policies are cheaper solutions. Get quotes for both to see the difference, and if third party insurance is significantly cheaper, consider if this is the best option for you. Third party insurance will cover the other person’s car in the event of an accident but not your own. In the most serious instance, if you are at fault for an accident and you write your car off as a result, you’ll be left with nothing and have to start again.

Start making savings today and call to book a Weekly Crash Course

Think carefully about how you are going to save money when you buy insurance for your first car. If you haven’t reached this stage yet, and want to book affordable driving lessons with a view to passing your test as quickly as possible, don’t hesitate to contact us here at Weekly Crash Courses. You can get in touch online or call us today on 07788 973 536 to book your first lesson.

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Whether you’re 17 or 37, taking your driving test is a stressful experience and less than half of us will pass our driving test the first time round. Quite often this is due to the same few mistakes that people make under stress, but here at Weekly Crash Courses, we’ll make you aware of these common faults to help you achieve your goal of passing your test quickly. The common faults usually fall under the categories of lack of accuracy, ineffective observation or general forgetfulness.

It can be intimidating having a driving examiner in the car with you, but by remembering these common mistakes, you’ll also make sure you don’t make them yourself.

Poor observation, especially at junctions

It’s all too easy to panic when you get to a junction and get out before you can make a mistake, but you need to make sure you take the time to check both directions and that the examiner knows you’ve taken the time to consider what you’re about to do.

You forgot to check your blind spots when reverse parking

Your examiner wants to see that you’re fully aware of your surroundings, not that you’ve moved your head around in an attempt to make it look as if you’ve checked your blind spots. By using your mirrors and keeping a careful eye on the areas you can’t see, as well as keeping an eye out for pedestrians and cyclists, you shouldn’t fall foul of this fault.

Using signals incorrectly

You’ll most likely fail your driving test if you give misleading signals, forget to give them or you don’t cancel them. Not only are signals extremely important, they’re an incredibly basic part of driving so you need to make using them and cancelling them an automatic habit.

Poor or incorrect positioning on the road

Whilst you don’t need to think too much about your position on the road, you still need to take note of it. If you’re displaying poor discipline at junctions and roundabouts, or you’re too far into the road, your examiner can mark it as a serious fault.

You drive at an inappropriate speed

Many people taking their driving test are so worried about going too fast and end up driving too slowly instead. Speed, and maintaining the correct speed, is essential for driving – no matter how nervous you are. Simply glance at your dashboard every so often and make sure your speed matches up with the speed limit of the area you’re driving through.


Here at Weekly Crash Courses, we’re specialists in helping you to get test-ready in just a week. For more information, simply give us a call on 07788 973 538 or get in touch online.


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Even if you’ve just passed your driving test with flying colour, statistics show that one in five new drivers will be involved in a crash in their first year of driving, and one in three drivers killed in accidents are under the age of 25. Here at Weekly Crash Courses, we’ve put together 5 essential tips that will help you as a new driver stay safe on the road.


Book yourself some Pass Plus lessons

Depending on where you decided to get your driving lessons, the chances are you’ll have limited experience in driving at night, in bad weather and definitely on the motorway. Taking Pass Plus lessons will help you to drive safely in a number of different situations most new drives find extremely stressful. Not only will this help you to become a safer and more confident driver, you may even get cheaper car insurance!


Take time to get to know your car

If you’ve just got yourself a new car to drive it, take the time to get to know it before you start driving it. Find the switches for your fog lights, locate your hazard light button and learn how to control your radio. These all sound like little, inconsequential things, but if you can’t activate or deactivate any of these things quickly, it’s all too easy to become distracted and have an accident.


Always check your blind spot

Whilst your mirrors are great for letting you know what’s behind you, you’ll need to check the blind spot just outside of your peripheral vision. The area is big enough to hide cyclists, bikers and even cars until you inadvertently crash into them. By checking your blind spot whenever you change lane or turn right, you help the road to remain as safe as possible.


Put your phone on silent and forget about it

Using a handheld phone in the car is illegal, including putting your phone on speaker and holding it in front of your mouth. Even handsfree sets aren’t that safe, and the mental workload required to have a conversation means it’s all too easy to lose concentration and react significantly slower to the road, causing you to miss things like pedestrians crossing.


Drive solo

You’ll become far more confident as a driver as you get more experience driving on your own, and if you have mates who pressure you into driving recklessly or dangerously, it’s essential that you take the time to drive on your own without anyone else there. If your friends are trying to influence the way you drive, don’t hesitate to tell them to get out or simply stop giving them lifts until they just sit in your car calmly, and maybe pay you for petrol money.


For more information about what we offer at Weekly Crash Courses and to book your intensive driving course, call us now on 07788 973 538 or get in touch online today.


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Before you’re allowed to drive on the roads, you will need to get a provisional licence so you can get driving lessons from a professional driving instructor or your slightly terrified parent. You’ll also need one before you can take your driving theory test. Once you have your provisional licence, you need to make sure you know all the restrictions and rules that come with it to ensure you successfully pass your tests and can get your full licence.

When can I apply for a provisional driving licence?

If you want a provisional to learn how to drive a car, you can apply for it up to three months before your 17th birthday – perfect if you want to start driving as soon as possible. However, if you receive the Personal Independence Payment’s enhanced mobility component, you can learn how to drive at 16.

How do I apply for a provisional driving licence?

You can apply for your provisional driving licence either online or by post by filling in a D1 application form. You will find D1 forms at the Post Office or on the government website. As well as making sure you meet the minimum age restriction, you will need to have the following information to hand:

  • Proof of identification (e.g. Passport)
  • All the addresses you’ve lived at for the past three years
  • Your National Insurance number
  • A colour, passport-style photograph

The cost of your provisional driving licence is £34 if you apply online, which can be paid by debit or credit card. Your provisional licence will cost you £43 if you’re applying by post, and you’ll need to send a cheque or postal order; not cash.

You will also need to be able to read the number plate of a car made after September 2001 from 20 metres, which you can do with the assistance of glasses or contact lenses.

Restrictions on your provisional licence

There are a number of restrictions on your provisional licence to drive a car that you need to be aware of:

  • When you’re driving, you will need to be accompanied in the front passenger seat by an adult over 21 years old, who has held a full licence for three years or more.
  • This person needs to be fit to drive when accompanying you, which doesn’t include giving your older friend or sibling a lift home from the pub at the end of the night.
  • They need to hold a full licence to drive the type of vehicle you’re learning to drive, so if you want to learn to drive a manual car, they need to have held a full licence for manual vehicles for at least three years.
  • You can’t drive on the motorway with a provisional licence.
  • Both the front and back of your vehicle must display L plates when you’re driving.

The good news is that these restrictions are lifted as soon as you pass your practical driving test, even if you haven’t received your full licence in the post yet.

For more information on our driving crash courses to get your full driving licences as soon as possible, call us on 07788 973 538 or send us a message online.

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Before you can attempt your practical driving test, you will need to take and pass your theory test. Whilst it may at first glance, look like the easier test, it’s split into two parts – a multiple choice test of 50 questions, and a hazard perception test and costs £30 to take each time! You need to pass both parts in order to move onto taking your practical test and gaining your full licence. If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed at the thought of your theory test, simply take into account these tips and hints to help you calm down, focus on the important things and pass your all-important theory test.


Actually book your theory test

Unfortunately, you won’t pass your theory test until you stop procrastinating and simply book it online. The 160 test centres across the country often fill up fast for every test slot, so booking early will help you get a date you want. To find your nearest test centre and book your theory test, simply visit the official government website.

When you’re booking your theory test, you’ll need to have both your provisional licence and your credit or debit card to pay the £30 fee.


Start reading up

The first half of your theory test consists of 50 multiple choice questions from a possibility of over 1000. In order to pass, you’ll need to get at least 43 correct answers. The DVSA (Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency) sells a theory test handbook which includes everything you need to know, example questions and useful tips. Ensure you have plenty of time to revise with this book leading up to your theory test.


Start practicing your hazard spotting

The other part of your theory test, your hazard perception test, is just as important. It’s made up of a variety of video clips where you have to identify a number of driving hazards. There are a number of websites where you can practice your hazard perception, looking out for cyclists, effectively scanning the road and identifying distractions.


Put aside time to properly revise

At Weekly Crash Courses, we love nothing more than to get things accomplished in a short amount of time, but when it comes to your theory test, there are no substitutions for proper revision. You theory test will be made up of 50 questions from a possible 1000 or more. You need to be comfortable answering any question the test presents you with at random.

Try and get family and friends to quiz you, and remember when it comes to your theory test, you’ll have to answer your 50 questions in 57 minutes.


Try taking a mock test

If you think you’re ready for your theory test, try taking a mock test on the government-run Safe Driving for Life website, although it only has the multiple-choice part of the theory test. If you don’t do well in your mock theory test, you have up until three days before your theory test to reschedule. There’s nothing wrong with giving your test a rain check if you really don’t feel like you can pass it!



Once you’ve passed your theory test, you’ll be all set to start your intense practical driving course and test with Weekly Crash Courses. For more information, give us a call on 07788 973 538 or get in touch online today.

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Getting rid of your L plates will be one of the most monumental moments you experience in life. Of course, before you can do this you have to pass your driving test and you can make this easier by listening to sound expert advice from a DSA Approved Driving School. To help get you up to test standard as quickly as possible, we suggest you prepare for your driving lessons by doing the following.

Feel confident with your driving instructor

You need to have total confidence in the driving instructor you choose to teach you how to drive. If you can establish a strong bond with your instructor and feel at ease when they teach you during driving lessons, this is going to make things so much easier for you.  You’ll know if you like your instructor or not, and will also know if they are the ideal person to teach you how to drive. If you’re not feeling the chemistry for whatever reason, it might be a good idea to make a switch and this way, everything should click into place.

Listen and don’t take things personally

When you learn how to drive you are going to make mistakes, it’s how you respond to these errors that make you a better driver. There’s no point in dwelling on individual errors, just learn from them, and aim to improve so you don’t make the same mistakes twice. Your driving instructor is there to guide you and correct any slip-ups you might have behind the wheel, listen to them and be open to constructive advice.

Dress appropriately

Whilst you might think you look amazing as you learn to drive in seven-inch stilettos, are they really that comfortable? More importantly, are they safe to learn to drive in or could they be hazardous as you operate the individual foot pedals? Dress comfortably as a learner driver and wear appropriate footwear with a nice flat sole so you can feel what’s happening through your feet.

Be patient

Learning to drive is a gradual process, so don’t try to rush through your driving lessons. Sure, you’ll pass your test quicker if you take weekly crash courses, but take each day as it comes and gradually pick up the skills you need to become a competent driver. By adding to your skills and breaking the learning down into manageable chunks, you will soon reach test standards.  Your instructor will know when you are ready to take your test so listen to what they have to say and be guided by their advice.

Take a Pass Plus Course

Passing your driving test is a massive accomplishment but this is only the beginning of your journey. Once you acquire a full driving licence you gradually improve on the skills, experience and knowledge you need to become a confident driver. As a new driver, a Pass Plus Course will be useful as it helps to hone your driving skills in key areas such as motorway, city and rural driving. Pass Plus courses help to boost your confidence as a new driver and they’re just one of the options we provide for you here at Weekly Crash Courses Manchester.

For details of our weekly crash courses, or if you want more details about our Pass Plus Driving Courses in Manchester, please don’t hesitate to contact us by calling 07788973538 or email us at

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Looking for a driving instructor is both exciting and daunting, you’ll be spending good money on driving lessons so you’ll want to the find the perfect school of motoring you feel comfortable with.

With so many driving instructors in Manchester vying for your business, it makes sense to take your time as you plan to book driving lessons. By following this advice, you should have greater confidence when you take to the road for the first time.

Look for a DSA Approved Instructor

One of the first things to establish is whether a driving instructor is DSA approved or not. The Driving Standards Agency issues approved driving instructors with green octagonal badges which verify they are fully qualified as an advanced instructor. The green badge is usually displayed on the windscreen of the training vehicle. Look at the top right-hand corner for clarification and you should see it there, you’ll find one on all of our vehicles here at Weekly Crash Courses.

Choose Between a Large School or Independent Driving Instructor

When you search for driving schools you will notice there are large agencies and smaller, independent businesses that offer one-to-one driver tuition. Whichever option you choose, make sure you speak to your instructor in person before you book lessons so you can get a feel of how you might get along.  It’s important you feel totally comfortable with your driving instructor as you will be spending a great deal of time together in the car, so it’s imperative you both feel at ease with each other.

Listen to Recommendations

It’s always useful if you know somebody that has received driver training from an ADI instructor and sings their praises afterwards. Driving instructors rely on word of mouth recommendations from past pupils. The best ones have no shortage of testimonials. Listen to feedback from friends and family members and look for testimonials from satisfied customers that tell you this is a first-class driving school.

Establish What to Expect From Your Driving Instructor

There are certain qualities you should expect as standard from your driving instructor. Politeness, punctuality and having clear lesson plans are just some of the criteria you would expect them to meet. A clean, well-presented car would also help, maintained to the best possible standards. And a cheery disposition wouldn’t be unwelcome either. It’d be nice if they made you feel relaxed. Flexibility with regards to lesson times can also be a crucial part of choosing a driving instructor. Ask if they can provide you with lessons early morning, in the evening, or at the weekend if this is the only time you have free.

Above everything else, it’s important you both have realistic expectations when you are choosing an ADI approved instructor.

At Weekly Crash Courses Manchester we have the skills and the knowledge to provide you with structured driver training so you can be above test standard in the shortest possible time.

Give us a call to find out more and to book driving lessons in Manchester on 07788 973538.