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AIBU?

To ditch Driving Instructor or not ...

47 replies

Autolearner · 18/11/2019 17:12

Name changed for this, and hopefully not to out of place here , but I am looking for people with more experience than me .

At 30 I’m finally learning to drive, which if you knew my history is a miracle in itself and have been having 4hours a week in Automatic lessons since September and been practicing with family and friends probably at least 5/6 hours extra a week in my own car. A month ago I passed my theory test and have booked my practical for second week of December.

Now my problem is I have not been taught any of the necessary manoeuvres needed for test? We parallel parked once in a lesson right at the start , but thanks to my own practice I’m comfortable . Bay parking (I’ve done fine outside of lessons), reverse bay parking, emergency stop etc we haven’t even touched at.

He claims I’m a natural driver , but when I mentioned I had booked the test last week he dithered slightly , I questioned whether he didn’t think I was ready . He repeated adamantly your a natural driver , but I want a few more lessons on motorways until your completely comfortable on them (I personally find them boring and have no enthusiasm, but at his prompting drive a junction or two every lesson for the last few weeks and join confidently and can read when to overtake etc)

I mentioned about manoeuvres and he said well some natural drivers struggle with them, and I thought I wouldn’t know because we don’t do them . I understand he teaches for life not just to past your test , but I’m getting frustrated. Every lesson we don’t drive the local test routes which I knew because I live on them, we drive outside spending most of our time on motorways , dual carriage ways and roundabouts off them. I’ve never seen another learner driver about during our lessons except just before the finish when we head back to nearer my home .

We do get on , he can be very funny however can overstep My own personal boundaries physically and verbally with actions and certain remarks quite often , and I have to tell him sometimes that when he shouts
“GO ,GO”
at roundabouts I find it makes me actually become hesitant when I’m not usually . Or, instead when you make a silly mistake he won’t just tell you once , he will keep on about it for the whole of the rest of the lesson so I find my confidence feels absolutely knocked and I end up making more silly mistakes that I never make outside of lessons checking my mirrors after I’ve indicated and not before, indicating the wrong way .

I just don’t know what to do? Do I postpone my test until he says no go and book it or do I look for a new instructor?

OP posts:
mrsbyers · 18/11/2019 17:27

Isn’t it usual for the instructor to tell the learner when they are ready for their test ?

mrsbyers · 18/11/2019 17:28

I’d try a different instructor but maybe be prepared to postpone test until they have assessed your abilities

MissRabbitNeedsAHoliday · 18/11/2019 17:31

I think it sounds like you arent clicking with him so might be worth trying someone else. However I thought instructors usually told someone when they were ready for there test, I didnt book mines until my instructor was happy I was ready.

Will you be doing a lot of motorway and dual carriageway driving? Hes maybe trying to prepare you for that.

On another note I had no idea you could learn to drive on a motorway now! I hate driving on the motorway I would have loved to have had practise before having to do it myself!

BackforGood · 18/11/2019 17:38

Does seem an odd thing to have booked your test when you've not done any of the manoeurvres .
But then it also seems odd to have not started to practice any of the manoeuvres if you've had 32 hours of lessons and if you are half as good as you think you are.
I'd jut be direct and say you want to go through all the possible things they could ask you to do on a test, and that you want to now practice driving the known test routes in the next two weeks.

TonTonMacoute · 18/11/2019 17:39

Don't feel bad about changing, the right instructor is crucial to building your confidence and making sure you are a safe driver.

When DS was learning last year he started off with someone who had been recommended by a friend. He was absolutely awful, and we were happy to dump him for someone else that I just found locally. The new guy was just so much better, it made a real difference.

Havaina · 18/11/2019 17:39

I want a few more lessons on motorways until your completely comfortable on them (I personally find them boring and have no enthusiasm, but at his prompting drive a junction or two every lesson for the last few weeks

Are you in the UK?! The examiner will never take you out on the motorway so why on earth is your instructor giving you motorway lessons?! My instructor gave me one motorway lesson and that was only after I passed my practical test!!

And 2 hour lessons are a con. My driving instructor was reputedly one of the AA’s best and he just didn’t believe in 2 hour lessons because the lapse in concentration means the second hour is wasted!

I had 1 hour lessons twice a week and passed first time! The hey is to have lessons close to your centre!

Autolearner · 18/11/2019 17:46

I took my theory later than planned due to MH, due to ptsd I struggle with being in unfamiliar rooms with unfamiliar people so had to build myself up to do it with lots of practice runs of building and routes. He kept telling me as soon as I had my theory out the way to book the test straight away that’s why his sudden hesitancy stood out . However when I said that I didn’t have his number to put in the site which you can do to book them in with you he said no not too and that I didn’t need it.

He has said in previous lessons that he wishes I was a poorer driver as he enjoys the lessons so much but I’ve always taken that as a throwaway comment.

MissRabbit its something I’m very grateful for , I was an awful motorway passenger, couldn’t bear them, but now though I find them boring I am very comfortable and have no problems with joining which was the bit I hated most as a passenger.

OP posts:
Autolearner · 18/11/2019 17:48

And yes in UK, just south of Bristol . He says that if you aren’t comfortable on motorways you shouldn’t be driving at all .

OP posts:
Nomorechickens · 18/11/2019 17:50

He sounds like a rubbish instructor, who trying to string out the lessons for as long as possible. Ditch him and get someone who will prepare you for the rest. And if they don't think you will be ready, reschedule the test

Autolearner · 18/11/2019 17:53

So I missed your comment BACKFORGOOD , when I have brought up learning what I need for the test that’s when he repeats he doesn’t teach people just for the test and gives you a whole lecture about his theory .

OP posts:
PawPawNoodle · 18/11/2019 17:54

I find it odd that you didn't book the test via your instructor, are you not planning to use his car?

If I recall back from my lessons we did each manoeuvre over my latter lessons, and I practiced in my own time. I didnt think bay parking was on the test. Maybe you could enforce this in your upcoming lessons, theres still plenty of time.

PP is wrong re motorway driving, they changed the rules so this can be done legally. I don't imagine itll factor into the test anyway!

For what its worth I had probably about 20 hours of lessons (2 hours each which, in my opinion, were the best since I spent a good 15 minutes fiddling around with the seat at the start of each lesson!!) and several hours a week practicing in my own car, and passed first time.

barcodescanner · 18/11/2019 17:56

I think you should change instructor and have an assessment with someone else. My friend has done just this and has just passed her test on the second attempt. The first one didn't take her round test routes, and cancelled her one and only mock test a few days before her first test.
New instructor assessed her, did mock tests and test routes. She thought she would have to postpone her second test but she was fine.

Havaina · 18/11/2019 17:56

And yes in UK, just south of Bristol . He says that if you aren’t comfortable on motorways you shouldn’t be driving at all.

This is utter bullshit and you would be a mug to continue with this instructor.

Does he mean dual carriageway?

Learner drivers weren’t even allowed in the motorway until 2018!!

InACheeseAndPickle · 18/11/2019 17:56

This whole things sounds odd. It should be the instructor setting the pace, deciding when you book the test, deciding what you need to work on during the lessons. I would at least try a different instructor and see what they say.

InACheeseAndPickle · 18/11/2019 17:57

I also second the comments about motorways - does he mean dual carriageways?

Havaina · 18/11/2019 17:57

@PolPotNoodle

PP is wrong re motorway driving, they changed the rules so this can be done legally. I don't imagine itll factor into the test anyway!

Who said it’s illegal?

Autolearner · 18/11/2019 17:58

Pot noodle that’s what all my friends have pointed out but he has always just insisted to book on gov site , then use an app to get it closer via cancellations and just give him the date .
I have my own car , 17 plate and have extra mirrors etc but He’s told me that the instructor on test days prefer it to be in a learner car , that they think better of you ????

OP posts:
DeathMetalMum · 18/11/2019 17:58

Driving instructors have been able to take drivers on the motorway since June last year (before then it was illegal).

If you are not happy with your instructor change. I had four different instructors in total. The first one I had when I was a teenager I wasn't comfatable with and just stopped having lessons. Then the next I felt a bit better but they became sick and I had to change. My third I knew straight away wasn't right. My final instructor was brilliant and it made a world of difference to my driving.

Autolearner · 18/11/2019 17:59

No he means motorways ... we do them and dual carriageways religiously every lesson without fail .

OP posts:
Neighneigh · 18/11/2019 18:03

Has he actually taught you on your local town's test routes? There's a reason the test routes are set, to test you on all aspects of driving. Have you experienced the different types of road traffic at different times of day? You've got to be able to cope with test routes and you will never ever go on a motorway on your test (dual carriageway, yes). Isn't it illegal to drive on a motorway without a full license?

Raphael34 · 18/11/2019 18:03

You’ve answered your own question here. He’s neglecting to teach you the basics and he’s knocking your confidence. I’d lose him

Neighneigh · 18/11/2019 18:05

Ah well there you go i stand corrected about motorways. But still, not learning to drive in all conditions is not good of your instructor

Autolearner · 18/11/2019 18:11

Thanks for all the replies . The only real test route driving I’ve done is in my own car with family/friends . I’ve looked up old routes on line when they used to be published and follow them, or just the routes family have friends have told me, certain local notorious hot spots they had etc .
Your right I do need too, I just feel stupidly guilty which again I know is stupid , but I wasn’t sure I could ever learn to drive so was grateful someone took me on .

OP posts:
iklboo · 18/11/2019 18:12

Driving instructors have been allowed to take learners on motorways since March this year and it can be included in the tests.

4-5 hours per week since September and no manoeuvres is mugging you off for a cash cow, OP. You should have been shown & practicing them long before now if you're driving in lessons yourself.

iklboo · 18/11/2019 18:14

I have my own car , 17 plate and have extra mirrors etc but He’s told me that the instructor on test days prefer it to be in a learner car , that they think better of you ????

Not true. They sometimes prefer to be in a dual control car but if yours is roadworthy they'll take you out in it.

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