Driving tests and learning to drive – news story

Learner drivers warned about extra charges

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is warning learner drivers to avoid copycat websites and save money by using GOV.UK.

If you type the names of some popular government services into search engines, some of your search results might be ads for sites that offer a service you could get for free (or for much less) on GOV.UK, the government’s own website.

Driving test bookings

Some of these copycat websites offer to book theory and practical driving tests, and look like they might be official, but they actually charge a premium for their services.

Some websites charge:

  • up to £30 for just booking a test, on top of the driving test fee itself
  • a ‘pass protection’ fee with the promise of a free retest that very few customers actually qualify to use

Copycat websites don’t let you pick an actual appointment, and don’t give you instant confirmation of your booking.

Save money by using GOV.UK

GOV.UK is the only official driving test booking website for both theory and practical tests.

Using GOV.UK to book your test:

  • can save you money
  • lets you pick the exact date and time of your test
  • gives you instant confirmation of your booking
Driving test costs
A car theory test costs £25 and a driving test costs £62 when booked through the official website; all driving test costs are at www.gov.uk/driving-test-cost.

You can book a theory test at www.gov.uk/booktheorytest and a practical driving test at www.gov.uk/bookdrivingtest.

What the government is doing about misleading websites

We know that it’s sometimes hard to tell the difference between the adverts, that appear at the top of the search result pages, and the actual search results, which take you to the government service.

The government is working with search engines to have the ads for misleading websites removed. We know there’s more to do.

We’re also working with the Advertising Standards Authority and the National Trading Standards Board to make it harder for these sites to run their business in this way.

In the meantime, we’re trying to raise awareness about how to avoid misleading websites. We’re working with consumer organisations like Which? and Citizens Advice Bureau to do this.

If you’ve used an unofficial website

You can report adverts in search engines that have misled you by visiting www.gov.uk/misleadingwebsites.