What to expect on your first day?

By Viv
What to expect on your first day?

It’s your first day at a driving lesson. And you want your first driving lesson to be a great one! And of course it is to most of us. As with any activity, it might be a nervous first, meeting your driving instructor, getting behind the wheel, listening to instructions as you drive, these might seem a tad bit overwhelming on your first day. If you’re new to driving, then being anxious is only natural. But getting over your anxiety works well for any beginner driver. As professionals in the field, the instructor you are with will try their best to put your emotions at rest and make your first day a pleasant learning experience. A 6 step key guide by driving-tests.org talks about getting over fear for first time student drivers. The first tip says ‘its best to have someone by your side to keep you relaxed’.


Apart from being anxious, there are other factors that matter when going for your first driving lesson.

‘What to expect in the first driving lesson’ might be the only thought on your mind as you begin your training. Here are few things to keep in mind which can help on your first day at driving school.

  • Wear comfortable shoes – Comfy shoes is always a good idea in any stressful situation. Wearing tight and uncomfortable ones could stress you out even more. Loafers, sports shoes, clarks, these might be a better choice to select from. But keep in mind, slippers, loose fitting sandals, flip flops are not recommended. In fact they are considered hazardous footwear when driving.
  • Don’t forget your glasses, if you are a wearer. Having good line of sight is priority when driving. If you do wear glasses, remember to keep them handy and wear them when driving. Also remember to get your eyes tested for your glasses prior to driving. Keeping your vision is important, particularly for those who wear eye glasses.
  • Take along a bottle of water. This will not only keep you hydrated, but will also help you relax when certain stress situations arise.
  • If you do have a provisional licence, do keep it handy. This will be important if you are required to show proof of your driving ability. Most probably your instructor may request for this at your first lesson as proof. Keep in mind that you may not be able to drive if you do not have the licence with you. This is required only during your first drive by the way.
  • Do not smoke or drink any form of liquor prior to your lesson. It will be an immediate disqualifier.



Now you’re ready, what next? Getting behind the wheel may take a little longer. Your driving instructor will probably take you to a lesser crowded or larger expanse of an area where you feel more relaxed to begin your first lesson and learn the basics. Here are some basics that you can expect to be taught.

  • Introduction to the car controls - Adjusting your car seat, mirrors.
  • Learning how to use the clutch (if your car is a manual gear one).
  • Learning the auto gear settings
  • Stopping and starting or moving safely.
  • Signaling and hazard lighting.



Once you are through with getting used to the basics, the instructor may drive around slowly demonstrating how you should ideally drive on your first lesson, speed wise. When the instructor feels you are comfortable and competent enough with the observations and controls. He will ask you to take over and begin your very first drive.

Slow starts and stops help students gain confidence and skills. Slow driving with the instructor providing you support will allow the student to experience the real feel of the vehicle. Your instructor will guide you on starting, moving to the lane, taking bends and stopping.

If your car is a manual transmission one, you will learn the preliminaries of clutch balancing. This is a vital part of driving and the instructor may take a good part of your time to teach you the proper clutch balancing techniques.

If you are driving an auto gear model, you will learn how to put the transmission in drive, neutral and reverse modes. Although easier than a manual gear shift car, Auto gear shift also needs a little getting used to. If you stall the car a one too many times, there is nothing to worry. It is only natural on your first day and will allow you to get used to you car even better. Instructors are aware of this with new drivers and will be patient allowing you to go through the trials of stalling and starting.


And that’s probably what a new driver on their first day will experience. Students find this first experience a groundbreaking one that will build their confidence, skills and help learn the basics of driving. As with all driving lessons, it takes practice to reach the intended goal of driving on your own. The presence of a professional instructor will eliminate any anxiety or fear of driving and will boost student confidence even more. Congratulations, you have just completed your first day as a learner driver!

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