Apply for a trainee driving instructor licence

To apply for a trainee licence to give driving lessons you’ll need to:

  • have passed the approved driving instructor (ADI) part 2 test
  • have done at least 40 hours of training with a qualified ADI

The online service is available from 6am to 11:30pm.

Start now on the Department for Transport website

Before you start

You’ll need:

  • your online user ID from the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA)
  • your password

It costs £140 and you’ll need a debit or credit card to pay. It will take about 30 minutes to apply.

There’s a different process to apply for a trainee licence in Northern Ireland.

Finishing your application

To finish your application you’ll need to email the following documents to DVSA:

Send them by email to padi@dvsa.gov.uk.

You cannot currently send documents by post because of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Your user ID and password

Your user ID can be found on all letters sent to you by DVSA. It’s not the same as your ADI personal reference number.

Email DVSA if you’ve never had a user ID or have lost yours. You’ll need to include 2 of the following in your email:

  • your personal reference number
  • your driving licence number
  • your date of birth

Rules for passwords

You can’t use any of your 5 previously used passwords.

Your password must be at least 9 characters long. It must include at least 3 of these 4 types of characters:

  • uppercase characters, for example A B C
  • lowercase characters, for example a b c
  • numeric digits, for example 1 2 3
  • special characters, for example £ % &

Help with your application

Email DVSA if you have any problems applying online.

  1. Step 1 Check if you can become an instructor

  2. Step 2 Apply to become a driving instructor

    You must get a new Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check to start your application, even if you already have one.

    1. Get a DBS check £6
    2. Start your application
  3. Step 3 Get a trainer

    Get a registered trainer to help you prepare for the 3 qualifying tests.

    1. Find driving instructor training courses
  4. Step 4 Take the theory test (ADI part 1)

    1. Revise and practise for your test
    2. What you need for your test
    3. Find a theory test centre
    4. Book your test £81

    Once you've passed the theory test, you must pass the other parts of the test within 2 years or you'll have to start the whole process again.

  5. Step 5 Take the driving ability test (ADI part 2)

  6. Step 6 Get practice teaching

    If you’ve passed ADI part 2 you have the option to apply for a 6 month trainee licence to get experience teaching students.

    1. Find out about trainee instructor licences
    2. You are currently viewing: Apply for a trainee instructor licence £140
  7. Step 7 Take the instructional ability test (ADI part 3)

  8. Step 8 Register and start working as an instructor

    Once you've passed the tests you must register within 12 months.

    1. Register for your first ADI certificate £300

    When you have your certificate you can start charging for lessons. You can either:

    You'll have at least one standards check every 4 years. You also need to renew your registration and get a new DBS check every 4 years.

    1. Find out about ADI standards checks
    2. Renew your registration £300
    3. Improve your skills as an instructor