Whatever it is that has spurred you on to do it now, learning to drive is an exciting experience. However, let’s not beat about the bush, it’s also a potentially very expensive one too! On average it takes 30-40 hours or even more, worth of lessons to pass the practical test. Given that you can expect to pay anywhere between £18 and £32 per hour lesson, you can easily be spending upwards of £1200.
Now that might seem like a lot of money to pay someone just to keep you company while you drive around in their car for an hour or so a week. Ask any of my mates (honestly, I do have some) and they’d agree my company is not worth paying that much for.
Perhaps £25 or so per hour or above sounds like a lot of money, it certainly is if you’re working minimum wage and juggling college, but the fact is that £25 (or whatever it is you have to pay) covers much more than that physical one hour lesson. I can assure you that not all of your hard earned cash goes directly into my pocket for lifes little luxuries, even though “Lady GDT” would like it to.
So, lets be serious for a minute or two, what do you actually get when you hire a driving instructor?
For starters, I’m legally allowed to teach you !
First of all, you are paying for my training. You could no doubt get a friend or family member to teach you, and other than paying for their fuel and perhaps buying them a box of chocolates it probably won’t cost you anything, although in fact it could actually cost you a friend !!! (I’ll let you think about that for a while)…………………..
That’s great for your bank balance, what do you actually get out of it? They may well have been driving for 20 years, but can they teach? Are they up to date with the latest driving techniques, styles, and more importantly rules of the road (Did you know they have changed over the years). So you could actually be being taught incorrectly and goes against what is required to pass the driving test.
As an instructor I have spent up to £4,000 to qualify in the first place (not to mention all the ongoing training I go through on a regular basis). This ensures that not only am I capable of a high standard of driving myself, but that I have the necessary understanding and the skills to be able to teach you to drive, which is actually the important bit. That training sets me apart from someone that isn’t trained, it gives me an edge. It makes me a professional.
So ! Yes having paid for my training, and passed a series of tests to prove my worth so as to speak, this makes me legally allowed to teach you to drive.
FACT – The law states “Only Qualified Approved Driving Instructors (And authorised trainee’s, but that’s a different story) are allowed to take money or gifts for driving lessons”
The Lesson itself
I can assure you I don’t just turn up for your lesson and then make it up as I go along. Before your lesson commences I will have consulted notes from previous lessons, to check what we need to work on, and then and only then will I take some of my own time to find a route specific to your needs at any particular stage of your learning.
Car Costs – The lesson charge also has to include a percentage that covers all of my day – day running costs for example supplying a suitable car, keeping that car serviced, making sure it is in a safe condition for your lesson.
Lets also not forget that cars don’t run on fresh air !! I need to put some diesel in.
Ooops yes, remember its illegal to drive on a UK road without a valid insurance certificate, so I have to pay for that every year also.
Marketing & admin and time off !
Choosing GDT as your preferred driving school, you will either have been recommended by a friend or you will have seen ad or web site somewhere, guess what ? These also cost me money, and yes you’ve guessed it there is a small proportional charge to cover that cost as well.
Being in full time employment has its perks you get paid holidays, sick pay unfortunately us self employed people dont have those luxury, if we want a week off or have to take some time off sick (You wouldnt want your driving instructor sat next to you being sick would you ) well, that’s unpaid, so hey, yep there’s a little bit added to your hourly rate to cover these circumstances (you don’t expect us to work 365 days a year do you ? )
Experience ? (surely that’s worth a bob or two as well)
Finally, you are paying for my experience, over the years I have taught many students, and not one of them learns in the same way. Everybody is different, for example some customers have a natural ability to drive so trust me we don’t teach them the same way as someone with Dyslexia or Dyspraxia and high anxiety. This means that I have found a way to quickly adapt to each new pupil, to ensure that they are taught in the way that works best for them; not for me. That is something that can only come with time and a lot of practice. It’s hard work that has already been done, but that you are going to benefit from immediately.
So, taking in all of the above it’s surely worth the cost of a lesson, isn’t it?
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