About the practical driving tests

On the day of your practical driving test

The information in this section relates to both the restricted practical driving test and the full practical driving test.

Note: you need to provide the car or other light motor vehicle (for example, a van or ute) that you'll sit the test in, so if you don't have a car of your own, you'll need to borrow one.

Test day checklist

On the day of your test you should:

  • check that your driver licence is still current and that you have it with you (you must always carry your driver licence with you when you drive). If you are using your current temporary licence, you also need to provide acceptable photographic ID (eg 18+ card, student ID card, current or expired passport)
  • make sure the vehicle being used for the test has:
    • a current warrant of fitness (WoF)
    • a current licence label
    • a current road user charges (RUC) licence (if you are driving a diesel vehicle)
    • approved L plates displayed front and rear if you are on a learner licence
    • is not a vehicle displaying trade plates
  • get someone to help you to do a pre-drive check of the vehicle you will be using for the test to make sure it is in good working order
  • make sure you know how to get to where your test will start
  • check that your vehicle has enough fuel to get there, complete the test and get back home
  • wear your corrective lenses, if you need to when driving
  • make sure you give yourself enough time to get to the test location on time for the test (if you arrive late, your test will be cancelled and you will need to book another time and pay another fee)
  • ensure the passenger seat is in a clean and tidy state for the testing officer to sit on.

Note: if you don't comply with any of the points mentioned above, the testing officer won't be able to take you for your test, and you will need to rebook and pay another fee.

Important

If you are on a learner licence, you need to be accompanied to the test site by a supervisor, as you are not legally allowed to drive alone.

Taking a support person

Before the start of the practical driving test, you can request to have a support person accompany you during the test. Children or infants cannot accompany you during the test.

If you choose to have a support person in the vehicle with you, the support person:

  • must be a person over 20 years of age
  • must not be accompanied by any other person or animal (except a guide dog)
  • must supply their name and contact details to the testing officer prior to the test beginning
  • must not talk, offer assistance to, or distract the driver or testing officer at any stage during the test. Should this occur, the testing officer will terminate the test and you would need to book and pay for another test
  • must not interrupt the testing officer as they are providing feedback at the end of the test.

You cannot have any other passengers (eg children or infants) in the car as they may distract you or the testing officer during the test.

The testing officer may refuse to accept any person as a support person if the testing officer believes on reasonable grounds that:

  • his or her personal safety could be, or is, threatened or endangered, or
  • the support person appears to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs or is noisy or violent, or
  • there is no suitable seating available in the rear of the vehicle presented for the test.

Note: if you don’t comply with any of the points previously mentioned, the testing officer won’t be able to take you for your test, and you will need to rebook and pay another test fee.

When you get to the test location

When you first arrive at the location of your test, the testing officer will need to check your driver licence to verify your identity and see if you have any special requirements on your licence. The testing officer will hold on to your licence during the test.

The testing officer will do a pre-drive check of the car you have provided for the test. They will check that:

  • the vehicle is sitting square to the road, indicating all tyres have equal pressure
  • there is no obvious damage to the vehicle that could be considered dangerous
  • the tyres have a legal tread depth and have no uneven wear, and the wheels appear undamaged
  • all the indicators and brake lights (including high-stop brake lights) work correctly and all lenses are intact
  • the high and low beams of the headlights operate, if the test is taking place in poor light conditions
  • the windscreen washers and wipers work, if the test is taking place in rain or fog
  • the horn works
  • the vehicle licence, registration and WoF are current (as well as the RUC licence if you require one)
  • mirrors are in the correct position for you to see behind the car when you are sitting in the driver's seat
  • the safety belts are in good condition.

Before the test, the testing officer will run through some basic instructions for the test and ask you if you have any questions.

Interpreters

If you have difficulty speaking or understanding English, we recommend you bring an interpreter with you.

Observers

Before your restricted or full licence practical test, your testing officer may ask for your permission to have an observer accompany you on your test. You can decline the request, but remember that the observer would be there to observe the testing officer and not you.

The role of the testing officer

A testing officer undertakes many tasks during the test including directing the applicant around the route, observing and marking driving behaviour and keeping an eye on safety. Because of this it is unlikely they will have time to engage in conversation with you. Please do not be offended by this.

In-car video cameras

The testing officer may attach a small video camera to the front windscreen at the beginning of your practical test.

The camera records the test and enables the testing officer’s performance to be audited. It also assists in investigating complaints where the test result is disputed.

If you do not wish for your test to be recorded, please inform the testing officer.

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Last updated: 27 February 2015