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PostPosted: Mon Mar 02, 2020 10:54 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2016 12:28 am
Posts: 101
Hello Folks,
My boy is 16 and he is doing his A-levels. Evil exams from what i remember in my days. Do people think it's a good time to learn to drive? Or maybe wait after A-levels? How long does it take to learn to drive these days?

I'm sure other parents are wondering the same...

F4T


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 02, 2020 11:07 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
Posts: 7618
Location: East Kent
Both my children started lessons just after their 17th birthday and were driving in Upper Sixth. It have them a lot more freedom.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 7:00 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:59 pm
Posts: 6722
Well, don't start until you are 17 (unless you are on a young driveers type course, off road!) I would recommend trying to get it done at home - it is much much harder to try and learn to drive whilst a student at university or in the holidays around uni. For most 6th ofrmers it is a rite of passage to have your first lesson booked on your 17th birthday - and many take the theory test on or just after that day too! Remember now that until you have passed your theory you cannot book your practical.

The general rule of thumb is that you should aim to have 40 hours under your belt before considering booking a test - this is likely to be a combination of formal lessons and out with parents - remember the actual technique of learning to drive is not that difficult (bar a couple of stalls and bunny hops) it's the learning proper road sense and decision making that is tough - our mantra is remember everyone else is an idiot - and I am staggered at how badly people drive around Learners - and these are people they can see are inexperienced because of the big red L on the car!!!

Some people will learn quicker, obvioulsly - but the god father to my sons is the CEO of a specifc learner driver insurance company (and has been CEO of several) - he showed me the evidence that those (boys) who pass on their 2nd or 3rd time are statistically far better drivers!


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 7:27 am 
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Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 1:05 pm
Posts: 6798
Location: Reading
DD in year 13 and actually passed yesterday. She started in July last year. A former boss of mine told me that passing your driving test is as important as your degree (I was working for him as a student). It would certainly have opened more opportunities to me work wise and he was right. I was keen DD got it out of the way ASAP.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 9:44 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:45 pm
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Definitely learn before they go to uni, but also in time to drive a fair bit before going otherwise they will soon lose their skills. Mine started learning in the summer of year 12 & passed in February of year 13, so had 6 months of driving before going.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:15 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 10, 2017 4:06 pm
Posts: 681
Regarding practicing before and after passing the test did you buy them their own car or did they drive a parents/family car?

We only have have the one car which we rely on for everything including getting to work, so would be a bit hesitant about letting an inexperienced learner drive it, plus its probably a but big to learn in. But buying a second one would obviously be quite costly in addition to lesson costs.

What about insurance?


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:22 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:59 pm
Posts: 6722
Go for Veygo bolt on - or Marmalade bolt on (although it was more expensive than Veygo) for Learner insurance.

Learner insurance is not expensive - young new driver insurance can be!!!

We found it "cheaper" to buy a small car (Class 1 insurance) for them to learn to drive in - and have upgraded now to a Class 4 one. Currently I have DS2 bolted onto my Class 20 car - costs about £10 a week through Veygo and you can insure them for days, weeks, months - stop and start for term times/holidays if you want, with Veygo.

You can pick up a car for buttons and spit - it doesn't have to be expensive - just check because Marmalade used to want the car to be under 9 years old.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:24 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:59 pm
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Meant to say - here lessons are £30 an hour - so we only have them every fortnight - but DS2 drives at least 5 days a week, with me in and out to school (I can work around the school run) so the cost of the car is mitigated somewhat by the "free" driving with me!


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 10:58 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 10, 2017 4:06 pm
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Thanks KCG. That's all useful info.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2020 11:04 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:45 pm
Posts: 7330
Same as KCG, we used Maramalade for 2 (we were main driver when they were learning, switched to them once they passed), and Veugo for one, same idea though. Our one with Marmalde was over 9 years old (two years ago). We found it easier for them to have a small car to learn in, as we need to be able to use ours. Yes to as much practice as possible once you are confident to take them out (eek!). Ours drove to & from schoool as often as possible and anywhere else they were going.- - uni open days are a good one to get some distance under their belts.


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