Should I Take My Theory Test Before Learning To Drive?

learning to drive - theory test

Are you currently looking at whether you should take your theory test before you start learning to drive?

In this blog post, I’m going to give you some advice on this topic and help you decide what to do.

What Is The Theory Test?

Learning to drive consists of the practical driving test and the theory test.

You’ll need to pass your test before you can pass your driving test.

Many new or young drivers – including myself when I was learning to drive see the idea of “learning to drive” as jumping into the car and driving around.

Whilst you’d be absolutely right with this, it’s important to know the theory behind road signs, road markings and general driving knowledge.

This can greatly improve your driving lessons.

The test is broken into 2 parts:

  • Multiple choice questions
  • Hazard perception

You’ll need to score a minimum of 43 out of 50 for the multiple choice questions, and 44 out of 75 for the hazard perception.

It will cost you around £23 to take your theory test.

Passing Your Theory Test

The test will ask you many questions from a possible thousand or so questions. You won’t know what questions you’ll be asked – so practice, practice, practice!

Once you’ve past your test, you’ll need to pass your driving test within 2 years from the date of passing your theory test.

For most people, and this likely includes you, you’ll have plenty of time to focus on the practical test itself afterwards.

So the question becomes…

Should you take your theory test before you start learning to drive – by this I mean preparing for the practical test.

Taking Your Theory Test Before Learning To Drive

If you’re quite nervous about learning to drive then it could be quite stressful for the first few driving lessons that you have.

If you’re trying to focus on learning to drive and haven’t yet completed your test, you’ll struggle to find time to reflect upon your driving lessons and how they went.

Don’t get me wrong – it’s certainly possible.

But I don’t recommend doing it this way because it will end up burning you out and you’ll have sleepless nights.

This is how I did it so I know from experience.

You’re much more likely to improve your driving lessons and save money in the long run if you’re able to practice and then take your theory test before you even book any driving lessons.


On the flip side of this, if you go down the route, or are already down the route of learning to drive and think you should’ve taken your test first…

Don’t panic – speak to your driving instructor as they can help you out with your theory test and help you pass it.

Your Driving Lessons

The driving lessons that you have could affect your test.

How do I mean?

Well, if you have a great driving instructor like I did, they’ll refer back to a lot of instances on the road to something relatable in the theory test.

If you’re practicing for the test, then this will reinforce the points made in the theory test on your driving lessons.

It might be worthwhile speaking to your driving instructor to find out if you can get a few hours every 2 weeks to go through the test with you in person.

Or every week if that’s possible for you.