Learning to drive in the UK is an arduous, expensive experience. There are two tests to take (one theory, one practical), each being ludicrously pricey. You’ll also need to have an astonishing amount of lessons (I’ve had over 50) just to even be in a position where you can take your practical test.
Half a million learner drivers have to take their theory test each year, in addition to the thousands who have lost their license and had to start from scratch. Thankfully, there’s a product out there that promises to make it easy to revise for — and pass — your UK theory test. Indeed, they promise to double your odds of passing on your first sitting, from around 40% to over 80%.
It’s called Theory Test Pro, and it’s really good. Here’s why you should try it.
Two days ago, I passed my theory test. Now, passing your UK theory test isn’t easy. First, you have to actually take it, with waiting lists often stretching to two months. Secondly, you have to memorize the entirety of The Highway Code, which is the Magna Carta of driving in the UK. Thirdly, you have to pass a “hazard perception” test, where you watch 14 videos, and click whenever you identify something that could cause a collision.
It makes sense to prepare exhaustively for the ordeal with simulated round of tests before you tackle the real deal.
Test Yourself With Theory Test Pro
Like many of the websites which promise to improve your driving, Theory Test Pro is a freemium product, based around the questions used by the Driving Standards Authority in the real-life theory tests. You don’t have to download anything, there are no apps to install and everything runs in the browser.
The free version grants you access to a minute subset of the questions available, as well as just a taste of three hazard perception videos. The free version also has ads. If you want to access everything, you’ll have to pay. Prices start at £7 for a week’s access, £10 for three months, and £20 for a year.
Questions And Answers
Memorizing the rules of the road is something that is crucially important for any learner driver. The problem is that the official, government produced learning material is tediously dull. I found myself reading The Highway Code for hours on end, and not remembering anything at all.
Thankfully, Theory Test Pro is a little bit more entertaining. Every question from the real-world test is available, and is appropriately aggregated into groups of topics.
You can work through these questions, gradually building up your knowledge. Information and hints to each question are displayed at the bottom of page. This is crucial, as it actually makes you work for your understanding. It’s worth noting that the questions I used are for the Category B driving test. That’s cars, basically. Theory Test Pro also supports the HGV and Motorcycle tests, although I admit I have not tried these.
For each question you answer, more information is revealed, further developing your understanding.
Passing your UK theory test cannot be done without also passing your hazard perception test. As mentioned before, this involves watching 14 videos and clicking whenever you identify what could potentially lead to loss of life, or a collision.
Whilst each video has multiple hazards, only one is graded. This means that you have to take extra care to identify each one. The grading works by awarding points based upon how early you identify the hazard, with a score ranging from 5 (good) to zero (fail).
Theory Test Pro has a large number of hazard perception videos, with eight coming from the official DSA videos used in the real-world test.
After you run through the hazard perception test, you can run through your answers, seeing how you scored, and how early (or late) you identified each hazard.
I’ll be honest, video quality is unrelentingly dire. There were times I missed a hazard, because I didn’t identify what it was in time. An example would be when I confused a flock of sheep as being a distance marking box. And no, I’m embarrassed to say that I’m not even joking.
Although, this isn’t so much a fault of Theory Test Pro, but rather the quality of the DSA’s videos, which Theory Test Pro uses. They obviously hail from the early 90s, and were seemingly filmed on a cheap VHS camcorder. The quality really is that bad.
If you want to give the Hazard Perception test a try when you’re on the hoof, check out their official iOS application.
I passed my theory test. I can honestly quite happily say that I wouldn’t have done it without Theory Test Pro.
If you’re doing your test soon, you’ll know that they’re expensive affairs. You want to pass the first time round. And you want to use Theory Test Pro. It’s honestly the best product on the market right now that goes a long way in making you a safer driver.
But what do you think? Drop me a comment below.