Frequently Asked Questions

Can you arrange a theory and practical test in one week?

No driving school can pre-book practical tests for potential pupils who have yet to pass their theory test, so be very careful if someone is telling you otherwise.
It is simply not possible to arrange both tests in the same week at the start of a course, (but we understand that there are many advertisements flooding the Internet suggesting otherwise). Please don’t take these promises at face value. Investigate for yourself what the earliest available theory test date is, then check practical test availability at your preferred test centre and see for yourself that you CANNOT book a practical test without your theory certificate number.
You’re potentially paying a lot of money to get the best that’s available. Don’t fall for any hype, and be prepared to talor your expectations to what’s truly possible.
If pre-booking both tests was possible, all driving schools would be able to do it.

Do you provide help with the theory test?

Yes. All our pupils are registered automatically with www.FreeOnlineTheoryTests.co.uk, which is the largest UK online resource currently available that helps learners prepare for the current theory test. With over 2,500 mock questions and 135 hazard perception clips, any learner should make quick work with the actual theory test if they’ve diligently applied themselves to our online theory preparation regime.

Do you have lady instructors?

In many places, yes, although you must make it clear when you book if your booking is reliant on our only providing a lady instructor. Please bear in mind that courses conducted by lady instructors may sometimes need to be spread over longer because their availability may generally be more limited.

If you have specified a lady instructor when you booked, and if we are unable to source one for the course you require, your deposit will be promptly refunded in full.

 

What vehicles can I learn in?

The majority of our courses are conducted in manual gearbox cars, although we can usually arrange intensive courses in an automatic car, depending on your location and availability. We regret that we cannot promise a particular model, make, type, colour or style of vehicle.
fastPass is a car driving school and doesn’t operate LGV training or towing courses.

 

When must I pay for my course?

A deposit is payable on booking, and this is generally non-refundable.
The balance of the cost of your course is usually due 30 days before the course is due to start.
If you wish to buy additional lessons directly with your instructor after booking a course, you are free to do this at the instructor’s standard rates, depending on their availability. Remember that this may not always be possible as the instructor will have other pupil and course commitments, which is why it’s so important to aim to book the right course in the first place.

 

What if I have any questions before the course begins?

Once you make your booking, your instructor’s details will be confirmed to you by email, and you can contact them to discuss most things, in particular, details about the conduct of the lessons or thesyllabus, or to discuss any issues you might have about the test process.
If you need to change anything you have booked, fastPass should be your main point of contact. Please remember that in order to be fair to both pupils and instructors, our intensive courses are arranged under a tight set of terms and conditions, and we may be very limited in what we can do to vary any aspect of a course once booked.

 

How do I know my money is safe?

If you book “normal” lessons, and have an issue with the school, you may have lost a couple of hours of lessons. But when you’re booking an intensive course, and parting with a large sum of money, you need to be sure that the driving school is reputable and that your money is safe.
For your peace of mind, firstly, all payments made to fastPass are kept in a separate pupil account, and “ring-fenced” for security until your course is begun.
Secondly, fastPass is NOT a limited company, so our owners are personally liable for any money you pay to us. We can’t think of a better way of proving to you that your money is safe and that we’ll do our best to work with you to get you your full driving licence.

 

Why is your cancellation policy so strict?

Intensive courses can be very difficult, if not impossible, to reschedule a course once booked, and we have a duty to protect the interests of both you and your instructor. It can be very difficult to alter any schedule involving a large number of lessons without leaving the instructor with no work to replace those lessons, so please be sure that you can fit in with the arrangements you make wehn booking.

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How do I know which course is best for me?


The algorithm we use in our Course Calculator to work out the best course for you is based on almost 40 years experience in the driver training industry, and aims to be accurate for more than 90% of potential intensive course candidates. Provided you’re completely honest when completing the calculation process, we should be able to give you a good estimate of the number of lessons you might need. If our calculator recommends a course that is significantly more than what you can afford, you might be better served having “normal” lessons, spread over a longer period, where you might be able to add additional lessons in order to get to the required standard. You might want to check out what’s available locally by way of “normal” weekly lessons via our sister website: www.BookDrivingLessonsOnline.co.uk.

 

Why are courses booked on weekdays rather than weekends?

Firstly, there are much fewer weekend slots available, and not all test centres provide weekend tests anyway. Where weekend tests are available, the waiting list is longer and the tests cost more, so if your intention is to take lessons over a short space of time, it seems silly to have to wait perhaps weeks longer to start the course – and pay more – just in order to include a weekend test appointment as part of it.
Secondly, traffic on Saturdays is often busier than on weekdays, so course lessons booked during normal working week-days will enable you to familiarise yourself with road and traffic conditions as they’re likely to occur on the day of your (weekday) test. This should help you achieve test standard more quickly.
Thirdly, if you were tempted to take intensive lessons in the evenings and weekends, to fit in with work commitments, it’s simply not practical to expect to get the best from a set of a relatively large number of driving lessons after a full day at work, using up the only leisure time you’d otherwise have to help you unwind and prepare for another working week. Extra stress on top, you can probably do without.
You’re going to pay a lot of money to try to get that precious driving licence. Make sure you get the full benefit of the lessons you are booking otherwise you’re defeating the point of taking an intensive course in the first place.

What if I can only make evening or weekend lessons?

If you need to fit in intensive lessons only after working hours or at weekends, your course may need to be spread over a longer period of time because lesson slots are more limited than standard daytime slots, and not all instructors are prepared to work the extra hours that weekend and evenings can entail. We would still recommend a weekday test, so you may need to take a half-day off work, or whatever, and the fact that you haven’t had the opportunity of driving during weekday road and traffic conditions may be detrimental to you, but if you have no other option, fastPass will do its best to accommodate your requirements.

What are the benefits of a residential intensive course?

If it’s important to you that you take a test quickly and the test dates available at your local centre are substantially longer away than the time you have available – perhaps because your theory test certificate is about to expire, or you have a licence-dependant job offer, or you have to leave the country shortly – then the most effective option would be to book QuickTest a residential course.
There are several test centres in the country where there’s a waiting list of a fortnight or even less, although these will usually work out to be more expensive because you have to add accommodation and travel costs to the cost of your basic course. However, if you are currently living in a part of the country where driving lessons are particularly expensive, you may find that some of the travel and accommodation costs in booking a residential course would be offset by taking a course in a part of the country where lessons are cheaper and tests more readily available.

Would you recommend taking 3 to 4 hours a day or 8 hours a day?

Most pupils find that focusing their efforts in a concentrated burst in this way benefits them enormously, but you shouldn’t underestimate how hard it can be for upwards of 3 hours a day behind the wheel of a car learning new skills. Even experienced drivers would struggle driving for 8 hours in a single day, so you must appreciate that if you decided to take a full day of 8 hours behind the wheel, the amount you learn by the end of that day will be significanlt less than you were able to absorb atthe start of the day.
We would always suggest 3 or no morethan 4 hours driving in a day, and even then take a short break half-waythrough.

How flexible do I need to be?

Although we believe we offer the most comprehensive choice and availability of intensive courses in Britain, the more flexible you are in your instructions to us, then it’s likely that the cheaper and more readily available the courses we can offer you will be. But all driving schools are at the “mercy” of test availability by the DSA, and all we can promise is that we are experienced and set up for arranging quick tests at the most appropriate centre for your needs, with competent instructors delivering quality lessons at a fair cost.

Can the times of my course be easily altered?

Generally, No. Once a course is booked it can be very difficult to make any changes because the instructor will have reserved the slots for you and it could be very difficult to rebook those times, especially at short notice, with another pupil.

Do I need an assessment before booking an intensive course?

In an ideal world it would seem to make sense, but in the real world, intensive courses are an entirely different animal to normal, weekly, driving lessons.
Any meaningful assessment for an intensive course should only be conducted by the instructor who’s intending to carry out the course, and as it would be wrong to rely on an assessment from another instructor because opinions and strategies can differ widely between 2 equally competent instructors. (And some “non-intensive” instructors might even be deliberately mischievous in giving you a misleading assessment, just to put the “intensive” instructor in a difficult and embarrassing position.)

But surely, any feedback would be good?

It’s notoriously difficult to glean enough information from a 2 hour assessment to enable even the most competent instructor to make any meaningful estimate of what you might need.
If you’re a complete novice, or have done very little by way of practice to date, there’s almost nothing that you would already know that could be assessed on an initial one-off lesson anyway, such an “assessment” is generally pointless.
Even as an experienced learner, a one-off assessment wouldn’t tell an instructor how much “learning” you remember from lesson to lesson, so such an exercise would be difficult to translate into how you’ll fair on a 30 or 40 hour intensive course of lessons.
This is why we’ve developed our Course Calculator, which – when completed truthfully – can be a good indicator of which course is best for you.

Is it best to have a course in as short a time as possible?

You shouldn’t underestimate how difficult it might be to cope with 3 or 4 hours, (or more), in one driving lesson session. Although the advantages of a “crash” course can be substantial, so can the pressure! You need to be sure that you’re temperamentally suited and can focus on the job in hand for extended periods in order to benefit.

Would you recommend my having extra practice before the course?

A Department for Transport study shows that, on average, successful driving test candidates will have had 47 hours of lessons with a driving instructor plus 20 hours of practice with a friend or relative, and that the average learning time to tut bhe practical test was 14 months.
When you use the fastPass Course Calculator, some of its questions will be directed towards finding out what other practice you have had, (or that you will be able to have), prior to starting the course. We will offer the best course for you based on the what you’ve said, so – for example – if you say you’ll be able to have extra practice with friends or relatives, then you should actually have that practice, otherwise you may be disappointed with the course we recommended.

 

What if I thought I couldn’t get extra practice, then find that I can?

If you’ve assumed that you won’t be able to get some practice, then find you are able to practice, you may have booked a slightly longer course than you needed, but this should increase your chance of passing, despite test nerves or unexpected road or traffic conditions.
Unfortunately, once a course is booked and an instructor is reserved for the required amount of time, we cannot reduce the course in the light of your extra experience because this would place the instructor at a great disadvantage, and could mean that he or she would actually lose money because of the lessons not then taken.

How does the Course Calculator work?

Although the recommendations may not seem entirely scientific, with wealth of experience that fastPass has in providing driving courses throughout the UK, and with the many hundreds of instructors and tens of thousands of pupils who have used Driving Instructor Service over many years, the Course Calculator will be able to give a good indication of how many hours you need to stand a reasonable chance of getting to test standard.
But remember: what our Course Calculator recommends will be based on the answers you give, so please be truthful, otherwise the course may not be sufficient for your needs.

What happens if I don’t get to test standard during the course?

The answer to that lies with the instructor.
If they feel that you are a good driver, but have become demoralised simply because of the psychological pressure you’ve put yourself under because of the test, they may allow you to take the test anyway to benefit from the experience. But an instructor who agrees to this would need to be confident that you would make a reasonably competent driver if you were to pass.
If your instructor doesn’t feel that you would be safe even to be allowed the opportunity of taking the test “for experience”, they will refuse to allow you use of their car for the test. If this happens, the lessons that had been reserved to cover the test will be converted into normal driving lessons, but your test will be lost.
If you have access to a car of your own and can organise a friend or relative to sit alongside you to take you to the test centre, you may elect to take the test, but in that instance, the lessons that had been reserved by your instructor to cover the test with you will be forfeited instead.

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Can I book my own test?

Yes, by all means, (as long as we know th edate when we book the instructor).
If you decide to book your own test online, fastPass can often arrange an intensive course of lessons to fit in with your date at relatively short notice, but this is obviously subject to availability of instructors who may already be fully committed to other courses in your area.

 

How do you get the earliest test dates available?

With a little flexibility on your part, and a lot of perseverance on ours! As prebooking of tests for non-theory-pass pupils isn’t allowed, it’s a “level playing field” for everyone trying to book a test date at any local driving test centre. Test cancellations sometime become available, and fastPass is in daily contact with the DSA to check for such cancellations, but you’ll also increase your chances at getting an earlier test date if you’re willing to accept a test appointment at a test centre that may be 10 or 20 miles further away from your home. As your intensive lessons will allow you time enough to drive from your home to the test centre and familiarise yourself with the roads and routes, the fact that you’re not entirely familiar with that particular town wouldn’t disadvantage you in any way because you should have time enough to become familiar with any unconventional layouts during the course itself.

What happens if I fail my test?

If you fail your driving test, you will have to pay for another one, although any additional lessons you might want to arrange can be booked directly with your course instructor at a special rate that reflects the fact that you’ve already undergone a course of intensive driving tuition with fastPass.

Can you promise that I’ll take the test at the date that’s booked?

Sorry, but No.
Examiner illness, industrial action, weather, accident, may all affect whether the driving test booked will actually take place, and the best that the DSA can do is offer to rebook an alternative test at their earliest availability. If this happens, your driving course will still take place as booked, but we’ll hold some hours back to cover the new test date when it’s offered by the DSA.
You must also be aware that if you don’t get to the minimum required standard to stand a reasonable expectation of passing the test, your instructor simply won’t allow the use of their car to take it.

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Can you guarantee that I’ll pass my test?

Nobody can guarantee that you’ll pass your driving test.

We’ve seen some highly-suspect “promises” being touted on the Internet, and you must exercise extreme caution when putting your faith in extravagant claims and extraordinary offers. Use your common sense. “If an offer appears to be too good to be true …..”

Why don’t you advertise pass rates?

There’s no industry acknowledged standard for recording and analysing test pass statistics, and they’re notoriously difficult to collate. If you think about it, every time a test is taken, technically speaking, the pass rate will change, and it’s not realistic for driving schools to amend their advertised pass rates on a daily basis.
There’s no industry acknowledged standard for recording and analysing test pass statistics, and they’re notoriously difficult to collate. If you think about it, every time a test is taken, technically speaking, the pass rate will change, and it’s not realistic for driving schools to amend their advertised pass rates on a daily basis.
And many instructors rely on that fact to present a glowing picture of their particular driving school.
If you’re impressed by some of the pass rates that are bandied around, check whether the method of calculation is shown and the period over which the data’s been collected. We’ve never yet found any driving school that advertises a so-called “pass rate” that provides any of this information, so Beware.

Why I should be wary of pass rates?

If a pupil takes 3 driving tests and fails every time, then passes on their 4th attempt, is the pass rate 25% or 100%?

Or if the pupil takes a test, but fails and is no longer with the driving school, (so is no longer a “current” pupil), do you think they’d still be included in the statistics? (If they were, the pass rate would inevitably drop year-on-year, even if only a handful of pupils failed and didn’t rebook.)

And if a pupil who’s taking an intensive course has previously taken one or more tests before the course, then passes on the intensive course, is that a genuine reflection that the intensive course provider has a 100% pass-rate?

You may believe that that’s the case, and that’s entirely your decision IF you know that that’s how figures are being calculated. After all, if you’re a complete novice and you’re influenced by an “85% pass-rate” you deserve to know exactly what that means.

Why is the advertising of pass rates, or “guarantees”, allowed?

Unfortunately, Trading Standards departments up and down the UK have bigger fish to fry than investigate every extravagant claim advertised by driving schools. Whatever “guarantee” is being offered by a driving school, look a little more closely as to exactly what the guarantee provides, or what information is given as to how statistics have been derived.
A course “guarantee”, might simply mean that they’ll pay for a 2nd test, or provide some additional lessons, but we believe you’ll find there’ll be a very clear limit to any so-called “guarantee”.
Now, it may well be that the extra promise of a 2nd test, or some additional lessons, may give you some assurance, but if you work out what the cost would be to the instructor for having to pay for another test, or extra lessons, look to see whether these “extra benefits” are covered by the inflated cost of the course.
Buyer Beware! “If it looks too good to be true ….”
fastPass chooses to give you good quality and reliable service at a fair price.

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