Passed your driving test? BOOM. Well done! Your life is now complete! Well for now anyway...but once the novelty and excitement have worn off and the reality kicks in, you now realise you are allowed to drive...ON YOUR OWN. God help us all!
Just kidding! Obviously if you have passed your test you are clearly at a level where you can be trusted to drive safely and responsibly!
So what happens now?
Most newly qualified drivers feel a bit nervous about taking to the road on their own at first, so here are a few things you might want to try before that first carpool of carnage to the local McDonalds Drive-Thru!
Take someone with you on your first few journeys. Someone who you trust and who won't be a huge distraction. A backseat full of excited friends is probably going to be quite off-putting to any new driver, so if you feel more comfortable having another person in the car, go for someone who enjoys a more leisurely ride... perhaps your nan?
Most new drivers do not go near the motorway at first. It's something you aren't taught much about when you are learning unless you choose to take a motorway driving lesson, and the idea of fast moving traffic across 3 or 4 lanes is a very scary proposition! Driving in busy, built-up places like London can also be a bit of nightmare, so get used to driving on rural, country roads for a while and in time you should feel much more relaxed by the time you drive on busier routes!
3. Pass Plus
If you opt for the Pass Plus course, you will be trained on things such as motorway driving, nighttime driving and driving in cold and wet conditions. In some instances, Pass Plus can make your insurance cheaper as well!
4. P Plates
Get yourself some 'P' plates if you are still quite anxious. These indicate to other drivers that you have recently passed and are still getting to grips with the road. They'll give you some breathing space and you should be less likely to have some impatient idiot up your backside.
5. Going solo
9 times out of 10 you'll probably be driving on your own! Sure it can be daunting not having that little voice next to you offering guidance, but you have passed for a reason, and if the instructor didn't think you were good enough to drive responsibly on by yourself, you probably would have failed. Once you can drive with just you in the car, driving with anyone else is easy
6. Black box
1 in 5 young drivers are likely to be involved in an accident in the first few years of driving, hence why insurance premiums are so high! Fortunately with Marmalade it's only 1 in 19*? So if you're looking for cover, it could be worth opting for a black box or 'telematics' policy! They encourage safer driving and tend to make insurance much more affordable. Plus you can review your journeys at any time and pin point areas that may need improvement!
Remember that passing your test is a great achievement, but with it also comes a new kind of confidence that can only develop through practice and experience. As the famous saying goes "you don't truly learn how to drive until you've passed"!