Learner drivers up and down the country are still experiencing the impact of COVID-19 on their driving journey. Driving lessons have stopped, private practice took a pause for many and tests both practical and theory have been postponed.
But what about those learner drivers who had a driving test booked in this period with a theory test certificate close to its expiry date?
Well, we issued a Freedom of Information request to the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) to find out just how many people were at a loss due to the lockdown.
Petition to increase Theory Test certificate
Looking at the data we can see that 35,937 people looking to pass in a car have now lost their certificates. At £23 per theory test, that’s a loss of £826,551 for UK learner drivers with May recording the biggest loss of £296,102.
Currently, there are no plans in place to help these learners. If the theory test certificate expires during this time, they will need to take it and pass it again before they can take their practical driving test.
Initial guidelines stated that driving tests were to resume on June 20th for anyone who was booked in before they were postponed, but this has been pushed back.
Based on the 90 day period, 399 certificates expired daily which is an average loss of £9,177 per day to learner drivers across the country. This average loss can be expected each day following the 20th June until driving tests can resume.
On average there are over 400,000 driving tests taken every 3 months in the UK, a number of which are learner drivers with theory tests close to expiring. We don’t think it’s fair that many learner drivers will have to re-sit the theory test and pay even more money through no fault of their own.
That’s why we’re petitioning for a three-month extension once practical driving tests resume for those certificates that have expired. This gives learners the time to take their practical driving test with a valid theory test certificate and also ensures that test centres aren’t overwhelmed once they reopen.
The reason for the two-year time limit on the theory test is to ensure the safety of all drivers, which is paramount. However, we believe a short three-month extension to the theory test certificate is enough time to help drivers whose test has been suspended, but not too much time so that the things they’ve learned in their theory test are forgotten.
Whether you’re a learner driver who has had a driving test cancelled during the period, a parent of a learner who is dealing with this stress or someone who can sympathise with learner drivers going through this – we ask you to sign the petition and get behind this movement to extend the time on the theory test certificates for those learner drivers whose tests have been postponed due to COVID-19.
Sign the petition
We need your help! Sign the petition today to help learner drivers impacted by driving test being postponed