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So you’ve turned 16 and naturally you’re pretty interested in getting your licence and experiencing the freedom that having a car can bring you.  You might know a little bit about the process of getting your Drivers Licence, but are probably curious about practical issues such as how long it will take to get your P1 licence as well as the number of lessons you might need.  In this article we look at some of the key things you need to consider as a learner driver to help you start the process off the right way.

Driving Lessons – Adelaide Eastern Suburbs

sixteen learn to driveOnce you pass your L’s test, and before you can apply for your P1 Provisional Drivers licence, you must have at least 75 hours driving time (with at least 15 hours driving at night) and you must hold your L’s for 12months.  You must be accompanied by a Qualified Supervising Drivers (“QSDs”) at all times.  A QSD can be one of your parents or your friends, as long as they have a current full licence (not a learner driver, a driver with a provisional or probationary licence).  Your driving hours need to be recorded in the Drivers Companion log book you get when you receive your L’s.

Like most 16 year olds, you probably have people around you who have volunteered to supervise you while you learn to drive.  Having someone you know and trust with you can help enormously when you’re learning how cars work and complex driving skills.  On the other hand, there are some teenagers who feel more comfortable taking all their lessons from a professional driving instructor.  A driving school can be a good option if you don’t have someone who can take you out driving on a regular basis.  They are often flexible with picks ups and drop offs (useful if you want to go from school or your work), and some even offer night time driving.  One of the most common ways of getting up your driving hours is to use a combination of your parents, family members or friends as well as lessons with a professional driving instructor.

Learning to Drive – Log Book Method or Vehicle On Road Test?

In South Australia there are two ways of being eligible to apply for a P1 Provisional licence:  you can follow the “Log Book Method”, or book in for a Vehicle on Road Test (“VORT”).

The VORT method has been around for decades (your parents probably got their licences after passing a VORT).  Once you have enough driving hours recorded, you can book a driving test which is conducted by an Authorised Driving Examiner.  This test is fairly straightforward, and they will test you on the road rules and driving skills as set out by the State Government.  You either pass or fail.  If you fail, you may re-do the test, but only after a delay of 14 days.

The “Log Book method” has been brought in as a slightly less confronting method of testing students’ driving skills, and involves a series of 30 tasks that must be completed during driving lessons with an Accredited Instructor.  The tasks are completed one by one at the driver’s own pace.

Deciding which method is better is a matter of thinking about which would better suit your skill levels and your personality.

Safe Driving