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UK Driving Test Backlog Reach Record Highs

The UK is currently grappling with a significant backlog in driving test appointments, creating substantial delays for learner drivers across the country. The Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has reported that the waiting times for driving tests have extended to an average of 17.8 weeks, a 20% increase since February 2024 (The AA) (GB News). This situation has been exacerbated by the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which led to the cancellation of thousands of tests and a subsequent surge in demand once restrictions were lifted.

Despite efforts by the DVSA to mitigate the delays, including adding 150,000 new test slots between October 2023 and March 2024, the backlog remains substantial. Over 50% of test centres have reported increased waiting times, with some centres experiencing wait times of over five months (The AA) (GB News). The problem is particularly acute in urban areas, where demand for tests is higher.

The DVSA’s attempts to address the issue have included recruiting additional examiners and extending working hours for existing staff. However, these measures have not been sufficient to significantly reduce the waiting times. The AA Driving School has criticized the DVSA’s efforts, noting that the backlog has had severe implications for learners who require a driving license for employment, education, and other essential activities (The AA) (The AA).

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DID YOU KNOW?

We here at bookinstructor.co.uk can slash the waiting time for your driving test* down by as much as 70%, when you book any package of driving lessons or intensive driving course, just select this option when booking and we will help you ‘jump the queue’. This can save you months of additional driving lessons whilst you wait for your test to approach!

We have a large team of admin staff who can do the hard work for you, rather than you sitting at the PC for 18 hours per day refreshing in the vain hope of booking a test.

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Camilla Benitz, Managing Director of the AA Driving School, has emphasized the critical nature of driving as a necessity rather than a luxury. She calls for more robust measures to be implemented to address the backlog, including further increases in test slots and better recruitment and retention strategies for examiners (The AA) (GB News).

The current state of affairs has led to a ‘postcode lottery’ where the waiting times can vary dramatically depending on the location. Some regions have seen slight improvements, while others continue to struggle with excessively long wait times. This inconsistency adds another layer of frustration for learners, who may have to wait months beyond the standard period to secure a test slot (The AA).

In conclusion, the DVSA backlog remains a pressing issue with significant implications for millions of Britons. The measures taken so far have not adequately addressed the rising demand for driving tests, and further action is urgently needed to ensure that the backlog is reduced and that learners can obtain their driving licenses in a timely manner.

Book your driving lessons or intensive driving course with Bookinstructor.co.uk and don’t forget to include a practical test, it could save you a ton of money in extra lessons.

*Admin fee of Β£48 does apply to find a short notice cancellation, you can book your own test on the government website (https://www.gov.uk/book-driving-test). Should we not get you a test closer than you could have booked yourself, we will refund the admin fee.

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