Do driving instructors come to your house?

Getting picked up

Your driving instructor will pick you up from a destination and time of your choosing, whether that’s your home or a nearby shop, before school or after work, or some other time and place that works well for you (within reason).

If you’re going to be learning to drive in your own car, you’ll have to make sure you have learner plates displayed in appropriate locations so they are clearly visible on your car. The overwhelming majority of learner drivers however are going to be learning to drive in a driving instructor’s car, and who will already have learner plates (and signage or car wrap).

First driving lesson tips:

Have a checklist of things to take with you for your driving lesson. This will include your learner licence, your logbook, and any other items you may need with you (including water).

It is recommended to start your first driving lesson at your home address. In the off chance you do forget to bring anything with you, you will be able to easily retrieve it from your house. On the other hand if you meet your driving instructor at the shops and you forgot your learner licence, you aren’t legally allowed to drive and will likely have to forfeit your driving lesson.

Introduction to the car

Once you’re actually in the car, the first thing your driving instructor will do is usually to go over the range of dashboard instruments and car controls with you and make sure you know how to operate the car.

You’ll also need to take some time to adjust the driver’s seat, rear view mirrors, and get yourself into a position that is comfortable while still allowing you to easily access all of the controls in the car and clearly see the immediate surroundings of your car.

Your first drive

You’ll eventually be asked to drive around a bit, likely in a quiet backstreet or parking lot. It’s not very likely that you’ll drive a great distance since the first part of your lesson will have already been spent covering your knowledge of the car controls. Rather, you’ll likely only be expected to get a feel for the car in preparation for your next driving lessons.

First driving lesson tips:

Try to relax and focus on the road, and following any instructions given by your driving instructor. If weather conditions are not clear, then remember to drive to conditions by slowing down if necessary and keeping a reasonable distance between you and any other vehicles in front of you on the road.

Learning the basics

You won’t be expected to do anything too advanced on your first driving lesson, and it won’t be assumed that you have any prior experience. For example, even if you know how to reverse parallel park, for your first driving lesson your instructor probably isn’t going to know that and certainly won’t expect you to be doing it on your first day with them.

Instead they’ll take you through the essentials of controlling the car and the basics of driving safely. Your tasks will likely consist of starting the car and moving off from the kerb, parking the car, and maybe one or two other basic skills.

First driving lesson tips:

Even if you have already had a bit of previous practice with a parent or friend before your first driving lesson with a qualified driving instructor, you should not try and rush the process. 

Your driving instructor will be able to determine your driving ability quickly over the course of your driving lesson, and even if you have already practiced a skill before it can be a good chance for your instructor to be sure you learnt the correct way.

Using the Mirrors

As you’ve likely experienced with other mirrors, everything in your rear view mirrors is going to appear backwards! Yes, there’s a reason ambulances and some other emergency vehicles have their description written backwards on the front of the vehicle – it’s so you can easily read it in your rear view mirror and move out of the way.

You will also discover that “objects in the rear view mirror may be closer than they appear” – a piece of advice that is written on most rear view mirrors. It may look like you have 6 car lengths worth of space behind you when the car following you is actually 2 car lengths away. 

First driving lesson tips:

Don’t rely on your rear view mirror if you need to reverse! You will need to turn your body and physically look behind you when reversing and to check for vehicles in your “blind spot” when merging lanes.