One of the biggest questions on the lips of Potential Driving Instructors, (PDI’s) is: How hard is it to become a driving instructor? The reality of this: it is really hard to become a driving instructor. However; everyone has their own opinions.
Based on the statistics published by the DVSA- one could state this to be true. To become a driving instructor, there are three exams. A theory exam, a practical exam and a teaching exam. All three exams need to be passed within two years of passing the theory exam.
Part two and part three exams; come with a three attempt limit. If you fail either stage at the third attempt, a PDI’s journey ends.
Many people decide to become a driving instructor later on in life, this could be due to many factors such as redundancy. It is quite common for ex-servicemen and women to become driving instructors, alongside teachers and other professionals. It is often dubbed the ‘perfect retirement job’ to supplement pensions and top-up of retirement benefits.
However- the industry has also seen an increase of younger driving instructors applying for driving instructor training and becoming driving instructors. With the promise of earnings topping £30,000 per annum and the thrill of being ‘your own boss’, the driving instructor industry is evolving and becoming more and more desirable to people from many walks of life.
There are two main routes to become a driving instructor. The most common route is by taking a course with an established training provider and becoming what is known within the industry ‘a trainee instructor’ or ‘pink licence holder’.
Once the theory and part two exam have been completed, a PDI is able to apply to the register to become a ‘PDI’ and can work on a pink licence badge for monetary gain. The pink badge is usually valid for 6 months, which enables the PDI to gain valuable teaching experience to be able to go on and pass the final teaching exam.
The other, less known route, is by sourcing a local trainer and train on a pay-as-go system. This route is less obvious when it comes to PDI’s seeking information on training courses. A PDI is able to apply for and books their exams when they feel they are ready to pass. However- this route may work out better financially, but comes with its own risks.
The average PDI will require at least 60 hours of tuition plus lots of on road-tuition practice, which could amass into 100’s of hours of training. Typically, training could last between 6 months and 18 months to complete.
Anybody embarking on a course to become a driving instructor should thoroughly research their options and the local market to determine which training option is best suited to them.