Driving lessons and learning to drive

Using 'L' and 'P' plates

You must put an L plate on the front and back of your vehicle so they can be seen easily.

In Wales, you can use a D plate instead.

An L plate or D plate must:

  • have a red L or D on a white background
  • be the right size

You can get up to 6 penalty points if you don’t display an L plate or if it isn’t the right size.

You should take L plates off your vehicle when it’s not being used by a learner.

P plates

You can display green ‘probationary’ P plates to show that you’ve just passed your driving test. You don’t have to display them. You can leave them on your vehicle for as long as you like.

In Northern Ireland you must use ‘R’ plates (restricted driver plates) for one year after you pass your test.

  1. Step 1 Check you're allowed to drive

    Most people can start learning to drive when they’re 17.

    1. Check what age you can drive
    2. Requirements for driving legally
    3. Driving eyesight rules
  2. Step 2 Get a provisional licence

  3. Step 3 Driving lessons and practice

  4. and Prepare for your theory test

  5. Step 4 Book and manage your theory test

  6. Step 5 Book and manage your driving test

  7. Step 6 When you pass

    You can start driving as soon as you pass your driving test.

    You must have an insurance policy that allows you to drive without supervision.

    1. Find out about Pass Plus training courses