Jakes Driving School Blog

Jakes Driving School Blog

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Choosing your Driving Instructor

In the UK, only Approved Driving Instructors (ADIs), and licensed instructors under training, can give instruction for payment. It is illegal for anyone else to charge you for driving lessons. Two types of badge are issued by the Driving Standards Agency (DSA) for display in tuition vehicles. A green, octagonal badge shows the instructor is fully qualified and approved. A pink, triangular badge shows the instructor is licensed under training and is not yet fully qualified. Also all Approved Driving Instructors are CRB checked to ensure you are safe.
The DSA monitors the quality of tuition provided by ADIs, and grades them accordingly. Grade 4 is competent, and Grade 6 indicates a very high standard.
Learning to drive can be an expensive business, so it makes sense to choose your driving instructor carefully. Always shop around and compare at least two or three instructors in your area.
It’s not an easy thing to do, unless you have a cast iron recommendation, so I’m here to give you some information on which you can make your own decisions. We’ll tell you what to look for, questions to ask and the sales tricks to watch out for!
Ultimately the best options is to go with a recommendation but as this isn’t always possible you may need to search to search for one on the internet through search engines such as Google or maybe looking local adverts in local publications or even the yellow pages.
The main thing to remember is that 99% of driving instructors in the UK are self employed so even if you go with a large organisation such as AA driving school, BSM or Red Driving school and so on then you are still ending up with a 1 man band self employed driving instructor. Driving Instructors that are part of these organisations have the backing from the organisations the driving instructors pay the large organisations to get customers. And this is known as having a franchise. Generally most instructors when they first start out usually sign up with a franchise, so if you go with a large organisation there is a strong chance that you are getting an inexperienced driving instructor or trainee driving instructor however this not necessarily a bad thing and many of the driving instructors that have a franchise stay with them as its convenient for them. What you need to watch out for with these organisations is they do sometimes attract bad driving instructors that get lots of complaints the large organisation will eventually get rid of them so therefore these bad instructors will tend to jump ship quite often. So if an individual driving has been with every franchise you can think of and changes franchise every 6 months or so then this could be a bad driving instructor. The AA driving school don’t use trainee driving instructors, however the AA own BSM and BSM use trainee driving instructors.
So if you don’t have a recommendation you will probably be better off finding an individual driving instructor or is not with a franchise. When you call him ask him if he is qualified or a trainee (green badge or pink badge).If he is qualified ask him what grade he is and if possible can you see his grade report. Most importantly ask him how busy he is and if he can’t fit you in for a couple of weeks this is a good thing because it means he is busy and so he must be good. If he can fit you in tomorrow then he might be a bad driving instructor. Don’t always go for the cheapest price this can indicate a driving instructor desperate for business so could be a bad driving instructor
When you do the first lesson you to work the driving instructor out quickly so that if you decide to change instructors then you don’t waste too much money so it would be better to change after 2 driving lessons instead of 20 driving lessons as if you haven’t learnt much because you don’t get on then you have wasted more money.
If he is always late this can be a bad sign however give or take 5 or 10 minutes because of traffic conditions and learners quite often take the wrong turning which can result in the driving lessons finishing a bit later. It would not set a good example if the driving instructor was to speed to get to you on time better to get there than not at all.
If he cancels all of the time then this can reflect a poor attitude.
When he turns up the car should be clean and tidy with dual controls fitted and check for his green or pink badge which should be displayed in the passenger window. This will ensure he is allowed to teach and is CRB checked.
If you do get a trainee driving instructor this isn’t always a bad thing as they generally put more effort in to the lesson, and they would be very up to date with the highway code and things but some trainee driving don’t always make it through the qualifying process but I trainee driving instructor and some trainee driving instructors’ are doing a better job than the qualified ones.
At the end of the day the driving instructor should be teaching how to drive and not how to scrape through the driving test, so if he’s saying from day one “Don’t do this or you will fail” get some one else to teach you
If you like any advice please contact me and please leave some comments on the blog before contacting me.

1 comment:

  1. Driving instructor you are looking to choose should be well educated about driving & road rules and yes you said it right that you should choose driving instructor carefully because instructor is someone will give you lessons about driving.
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