If you passed your driving test after 1st January 1997 then you will need to take a D1 minibus driving test to drive vehicles with more than 9 seats. I can offer this training as an intensive course or as a series of 2 or 3 hour sessions.
Once passed, you will have category D1 added to your driving licence which will enable you to drive a minibus with up to 16 passenger seats in a vocational capacity (for hire and reward). The hire and reward is not something that anyone who has the category D1 as “grand father rights” (passed their driving test before 1st January 1997) has entitlement to. Having the D1 category on your licence is something you can add to your CV, important if you are working in school or other organisation where a minibus is used.
I can offer this training as an intensive course or as a series of 2 or 3 hour sessions. This training takes place in your own supplied minibus.
So, how do you go about gaining this extra category to your driving licence? Read on...
The steps are simple:
- 1. Completion of the Medical Examination Report (Form D4) by your doctor.
- 2. Apply to have the Provisional D1 category added to your driving licence.
- 3. Pass the PCV theory test.
- 4. Pass the D1 practical driving test.
In order to add the provisional D1 category to your driving licence, you will need to download the Medical Examination Report for a Group 2 Licence Form (D4) from the website www.direct.gov.uk.
This form will need to be completed by your doctor. You may be charged in the region of £100 for this.
Once form D4 has been completed, you can then complete form D2 “Application for a driving licence for a lorry, minibus or bus”. This can be ordered from the DVLA form ordering service at www.direct.gov.uk.
It may take up to 3 weeks for this to be returned to you. Once your licence is returned to you you can then start the practical training.
The theory test consists of two parts, the multiple choice test and the hazard perception test.
The fee for the multiple choice test is £35 and £15 for the hazard perception test.
The PCV Multiple Choice Test
Before the test starts you’ll be given instructions on how the test works. You can also choose to go through a practice session of the multiple choice questions to get used to the layout of the test. At the end of the practice session the real test will begin.
A question and several answer options will appear onscreen and you have to select the right answer to the question by touching the screen.
The pass mark for the multiple choice part of the theory test is 85 out of 100. You will have just less than two hours to answer the questions.
The PCV Hazard Perception Test
First, you will be shown a short video clip about how the hazard perception part works. You will be presented with 19 video clips which feature everyday road scenes. In each clip there will be at least one developing hazard, but one of the clips will feature two developing hazards. Each clip will last about one minute.
To achieve a high score you will need to respond to the developing hazard during the early part of its development. The maximum points you can score on each hazard is five. You will not be able to review your answers to the hazard perception test: as on the road, you will only have one chance to respond to the developing hazard.
The pass mark for the hazard perception part of the theory test is 67 out of 100.
The hazard perception part of the driving theory test has recently been updated using computer generated imagery (CGI).
At the end of the test
At the end of the hazard perception part of the theory test you’ll be invited to answer a number of customer survey questions.
You don't have to answer the questions if you do not want to and any information given is anonymous and confidential. The survey questions don't affect the result of the test.
When you have finished the test you may leave the examination room. Once you have left the room, you won’t be allowed to enter it again. You will be given your result and feedback information within 10 minutes of finishing the test.
After passing the theory test
You will receive an embossed pass letter detailing the results for the part of the theory test you have completed.
When you have passed both parts, you will receive your theory test certificate which includes your theory test number.
Your theory test certificate is valid for two years from the date you passed the first part of the test. If you do not pass your practical test within this two year period, you will have to take another theory test.
If you fail the theory test
If you fail you should look at the feedback given on the letter and identify why you failed.
If you want to book another theory test you can book a test straight away, but you cannot take the test for another three clear working days. So, if you failed your first test on Monday afternoon, you will have to wait until Friday morning before you can take your next theory test.
Once you have passed your theory test, you can book your practical driving test. The current cost for this is £115.
At the beginning of the test you will be asked five vehicle safety (Show Me, Tell Me) questions. These questions along with model answers are shown later.
You will be examined on your general driving and on a reversing exercise.
The reversing exercise takes place at the start of the test at the test centre. It involves you reversing the minibus in a ‘S’ shape, finishing with the minibus in a ‘garage’ made from cones and with the rear of the minibus being within 1 metre of the rear of the ‘garage’.
You will then take to the road. During the road part of the driving test the examiner will give you directions which you should follow. Test routes are designed to be as uniform as possible and will include a range of typical road and traffic conditions. During your training you will drive on the routes that you are likely to drive on during your test. You will be asked to pull up at the side of the road on several occasions. On one occasion you will be asked to pull up and ‘service’ a bus stop. The test also includes an uphill and downhill start. There will be a 10 minute independant driving period where you will be asked to follow signs for a particular destination, or given 3 directions to follow. If you make a mistake, don't worry about it, it might be a less serious driving fault and may not affect your result.
The examiner will be looking for an overall safe standard of driving. You can make up to 15 driving faults and still pass the test (16 or more driving faults will mean a failure). However, if you commit one serious or dangerous fault you will fail the test.
After the practical test
When the driving test is over, the examiner will tell you whether you passed or failed. The examiner will give you feedback on your performance during the test.
If you pass, the examiner will issue you with a pass certificate and offer to send your licence away for you to have the D1 category added to it.