LEARNING TO drive is a rite of passage – a ticket to freedom for young drivers and a relief for parents who have spent the past few years taxiing children around.
However, getting a driving licence is an expensive process, with the average young driver spending about £1,000 to pass their driving test and gain a full licence.
In an attempt to ease the financial burden of motoring, the government has announced that it is to cut the online application fee for a provisional licence from £50 to £34 in November. The cost of renewing a licence online will drop from £20 to £14.
The chief secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander, said: “Giving savings back to the taxpayer is a key element in this government’s drive for a stronger economy and a fairer society. That’s why we’re slashing the cost of getting a driving licence and giving it straight back to young people and businesses, saving £150m over 10 years.”
Although a reduction in the cost of acquiring a provisional licence will please those keen to crack out the L-plates, it doesn’t address the problem of expensive lessons, the cost of the driving test and expensive insurance imposed on new drivers.
A recent study by the government found that the average new driver requires 47 hours of tuition to be ready for their first test; with lessons costing an average of £24 an hour, the fees quickly add up.
On top of that, learners must factor in at least one theory exam (£25) and the test itself, which can cost as much as £75 and may take a number of attempts to pass.
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