Why is a driving test so expensive?

why are driving tests so expensive?

Driving tests in the UK can seem rather expensive, considering it doesn’t even guarantee you to be able to drive after it. So why are driving tests so expensive?

In the UK, to sit your practical driving test costs £62 – £75 depending on what time and day you choose.

This seems very high considering the test lasts around 40 minutes and doesn’t include the cost of hiring the car. (This can cost around £25 to hire your instructors car for the test)

Why does it cost so much?

The examiner is costing almost £100 an hour. This seems ridiculous for the job at hand. The cost per hour is comparable with some lawyers.

It is impossible to know for sure but it seems likely that the cost is artificial. It seems to be inflated. A likely reason for this is that the government do not want people to be sitting as many driving tests as they wish with little consequence.

There should be a resistance in place which discourages multiple attempts from drivers who aren’t ready. This resistance comes in the form of a high price.

Is the practical driving test over priced?

It is impossible to tell because we don’t know what the money is used for. The money could help pay for the new drivers license you will receive. It could go towards keeping all the drivers records up to date.

However, if we have a look at the report carried out by Admiral we can see that the cost of theory and practical tests combined are much lower in some other countries. This suggests that the UK are charging more than necessary for their tests.

What can I do about the high cost of driving tests?

There is not much you can do to combat the high prices of driving practical tests. However, there are some small measures you can take to save as much money as possible.

  1. Make sure you are ready for your test
  2. Book your test at the right time
  3. Practice test routes

Make sure you are ready for your test

Booking your test before you are fully ready is a good way to spend more money. If you are not ready then you will more than likely fail and have to spend another £62 + car hire costs.

Save money by making sure you are ready before you book your test. A good way to check you are ready is to ask your instructor to carry out a mock test. This will give you a good gauge of how ready you are for your practical test.

Book your test at the right time

The cost of your test depends on when you book it. Weekdays during the day are the best time to book as it only costs £62.

If you book after 4:30 pm this is classed as an evening test. Evenings, weekends and bank holidays cost £75 to book.

This is a £13 difference in price.

Practice test routes

To make sure you pass in as little tests as possible, it is recommended that you follow the test routes. This allows you to get comfortable with the roads you are likely to be on in your test.

It is not ideal to be on a road you are not familiar with on your test. It gives you a little more to think about.

Try to cover as much area as possible when practising. This will allow you to feel familiar with the roads around your test centre.


Overall, there is no certain answer as to why driving tests cost so much. However, it does seem that they are overpriced for the service you are receiving.

It would seem as though it is possible to charge a high price as it is a necessary step to being fully licensed. If a learner has already spent thousands on learning, then £75 may not seem as high a cost.

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