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The Cost Of Learning To Drive In 2024 


Quotezone.co.uk research reveals the cost of learning to drive in the UK in 2024 comes to a total of £3142

The UK public transport system has seen a serious decline, becoming more unreliable and inaccessible. With these restrictions on travel, it is becoming more and more necessary for people in the UK to learn to drive. But with total costs of over £3142 before getting your full licence, can young people overcome the financial obstacles of learning to drive in the UK?

Bus services have been cut by more than 80% over the past 15 years in some parts of England and Wales. On top of this, strikes have impacted thousands of people who rely on train travel throughout the UK. Costs are also increasing, with train ticket prices due to rise 4.9% as of March 2024 despite more strikes being planned.

With rising costs across vehicle tax, insurance and driving lessons, it has never been more expensive to learn to drive. However, going in with your eyes open when it comes to the average costs of each aspect of learning to drive can help safeguard you from overpaying. And when it comes to your insurance, we can provide you with helpful tips that could save you money on your young driver insurance costs. 

A Breakdown of UK Learner Driver Costs In 2024

1. How much is a provisional licence in the UK?

This is often the first official step into becoming a learner driver. You will need a provisional licence before you can legally drive on the road (with the appropriate supervision), or take any lessons. You can apply for a provisional licence as young as 15 years and 9 months old, but you won’t be able to use it to drive a car until you are 17.
The cost of a provisional licence in the UK is £34 to apply online, or £43 by post.
However, these licences do have an expiry date so if you are not able to pass your driving test and switch to a full licence before the provisional expires, you will need to renew it if you intend to continue to learn to drive, and this will cost you another £14. A provisional licence is typically valid for ten years. There is also a fee for replacing your provisional licence if it is lost or stolen, and this will cost you £20. 

2. How much are driving lessons?

The average cost of a driving lesson in the UK is £34 per hour. But how many lessons do you need when learning to drive? The first thing to know is that there is no official minimum number of lessons or hours you must practise driving to pass your driving test.
However, the average learner driver spends 45 hours with their instructor. This leads to a total cost of £1,530 spent on driving lessons on average. This makes driving lessons the biggest expense for learner drivers. 

3. How much does a theory test cost?

Theory tests cost £23, and unlike your practical driving test, there is no extra charge for booking an evening or weekend slot. The thing with tests is that not everyone can pass the first time.
If you need to rebook the test you will need to pay the fee again. And even if you do pass, you only have 2 years from your theory pass date to pass your practical driving test. If you don’t pass within 2 years of getting your theory, you will have to retake the test and pay the fee again. 

4. How much is a practical driving test?

A practical driving test will cost you £62 for a weekday test slot, and this cost rises to £75 if you need to take the test during the evening, on the weekend or on a bank holiday.
If you are using your instructor’s car for the test, they will typically also charge you a fee of around £68 or the equivalent of twice their hourly fee

Of course, not everyone passes their driving test the first time and there are many surprising reasons people fail. The pass rate of a UK practical car driving test was 48.4% in 2023, falling 0.5% from the previous year. So if you need to retake your test, you will have to pay these costs a second or even a third time. 

5. How much does young driver insurance cost?

We’ve used our own Quotezone data from 2023 to give you an average insurance estimate of young driver insurance for 18-24 year olds. This revealed an average cost of £1,230.
Young driver insurance is notoriously high, but like many expenses, it has been increasing in recent years, as seen in these costs over a three-year period:

Insurance yearAverage for an 18 year oldAverage for a 21 year old
2021 £1,105 £1,109
2022 1,125 £1,066
2023 £1,207 £1,195
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6. What additional expenses will I have as a learner driver? 

For a car to be driven legally on UK public roads, you will need to make sure it is taxed as well as being insured. If you are learning to drive in a family member’s or driving instructor’s car, the tax could already be covered by the car owner or in your lesson fee.
However, if this is not the case, you will have to pay car tax. And this is predicted to cost £190 from April 2024 depending on the vehicle you are driving.

Additional expenses can also include the cost of revision apps and resources that help you pass your theory or practical test. These could cost you £5, but as we have discussed it could cost you more in the long run to rebook your theory exam or driving test multiple times, so these could be a good investment. 

Costs After You Pass Your Driving Test

Does it cost to change my provisional licence to a full license?

No, this will usually be done at no additional cost. Your full licence will usually be sent to you automatically by the DVLA. The examiner will simply take your provisional licence after you pass the test and arrange for the licence to be sent to you. However, if you want to use a different photo than the one on your provisional licence, you will need to pay a £17 fee. 

How much does a MOT cost?

The amount you will pay for your annual MOT will depend on the vehicle you drive. However, there is a maximum amount you can be charged for a MOT. The maximum fee for a car is £54.85 as of 2024. 

How can I get cheaper young driver insurance?

Despite rising insurance prices across the board, there are some measures you can take to keep down the cost of your young driver car insurance. These include:

  • Considering a black box or telematics insurance policy – These are popular with new drivers as they let insurers gauge your level of risk. Data from our Quotezone customers showed that 18-24 year olds who had a telematic on their policy saved an average of £75 more than those who didn’t. 
  • Get insured on an experienced driver’s policy – If you have the option to be insured on the car insurance policy of a more experienced driver, this can help balance the risk and lower premiums. However this experienced driver needs to be the genuine main driver of the car, otherwise you could be ‘fronting’ which is illegal. 
  • Choose a suitable car – The car you drive will have an impact on your insurance costs. A car with a lower market value and less powerful engine can help insurers see you as a lower risk to insure and could cut insurance costs. 
  • Compare policies – Shopping around and comparing young driver insurance can help you quickly find a wider range of prices, letting you choose a policy that covers your needs and budget. At Quotezone.co.uk we help you compare over 100 trusted UK car insurance companies with just one simple form. 

Advice from our comparison experts:

“Even car insurance is often the most expensive for young drivers, especially ages 18-24 but there are a lot of tips they can try to create savings – such as reducing mileage, parking on a private driveway at night and adding a second more experienced driver to the policy. Just make sure the main driver is the person who actually drives the most miles.

“There are lots of ways to save even for this high-risk group so shop around, pay annually and review prices three weeks from your renewal date when it is often most competitive, and hopefully driving can become more affordable again for our young drivers.” – Greg Wilson, Founder & CEO of Quotezone.co.uk

As the UK’s transport services evolve, so do the costs experienced by UK learner drivers. These costs have the potential to act as a financial barrier to travel opportunities and mobility in areas with little or no public transport connections.
There is a serious need for solutions and regulations to take the financial pressure off people learning to drive in the UK. But for now, being informed of the average cost of learning to drive can help you to make informed spending decisions and plan for the expenses you will experience from start to finish. Find more research-backed tips on how to save as a young driver.





https://www.rateddriving.com/learner-driver/how-much-are-driving-lessons-in-the-uk/ and https://readytopass.campaign.gov.uk/driving-skills/track-progress-learning/





This article is intended as generic information only and is not intended to apply to anybody’s specific circumstances, demands or needs. The views expressed are not intended to provide any financial service or to give any recommendation or advice. Products and services are only mentioned for illustrative rather than promotional purposes.