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  • Writer's pictureAndy Lloyd

Can You Drive On The Motorway As a Learner?

Are learner drivers allowed on the motorway? Yes. Thanks to a change in the rules in 2018, learners are now allowed on motorways.


Although motorway driving lessons can be quite intimidating for many learner drivers, they will lead to a broader driving experience. If you’re currently taking your driving lessons and you’re considering going on a motorway, carry on reading for more information on the rules for learner drivers on motorways.


The rules for driving on the motorway as a learner


A learner must be accompanied by an approved driving instructor


Learner drivers must only ever drive on a motorway if they’re with a DVSA-approved driving instructor. This is for safety reasons and means that trainee driving instructors are not allowed to take learner drivers for motorway lessons.


The vehicle must be fitted with L-plates and dual controls.


The updated rules state that the learner vehicle must be equipped with L-plates and dual controls for motorway lessons.


Since learner drivers don’t have the reaction time or knowledge of a more experienced driver, a dual-controlled car ensures that the driving instructor can step in if something goes wrong. This means learner drivers can feel more reassured that if they do make a mistake, their instructor can take over, so both parties stay safe.


Is it compulsory for all learners to drive on the motorway?


No, it’s not mandatory. It will be up to each instructor to decide if their student is ready to drive on motorways.


Although a motorway lesson isn’t essential, exposing learner drivers to motorways should provide a better understanding of how high-speed driving is performed safely.


Why did the law change?


This law was changed to better prepare learners for a lifetime of safe and careful driving. Allowing learner drivers on the motorway will:


· provide a more varied driving experience before a driving test

· provide training on how to enter and exit a motorway, safely overtake and use each lane correctly

· teach learner drivers how to safely drive at high speeds

· teach learners to understand road signs specific to motorways

· teach learner drivers how to deal with a broken-down vehicle on a motorway

· boost their confidence in driving on motorways on their own after passing the driving test



Are learner drivers allowed to drive on dual carriageways?


Yes, driving instructors can take their learners on dual carriageways as long as the car displays L-plates. Although this may seem daunting to many young drivers, driving on a dual carriageway is excellent practice for motorway driving because of their similarities.


How many motorway driving lessons will I need?


This depends on each learner’s driver. Everyone learns at a different pace, and some young drivers may be more confident than others. Those who are less confident will need more practice on motorways.


Remember, there’s no minimum or maximum number of hours you need to do before taking your driving test.


Is motorway driving part of the UK driving test?


No, despite the law being changed, driving on motorways isn’t part of the practical driving test. It’s not known whether it will be included in the driving test in the future, but for now, there are no plans to add a motorway section to the test.

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