Driving instructor training - FAQ's
With so many companies offering training to become a driving instructor, it can be difficult deciding who to train with. To help dispel some of the misinformation that is around, we have answered some of the most frequently asked questions that we hear.
About the training
Do you have the option of a trainee licence to get real experience of the job?
Yes, LDC supports the Governments Trainee Licence scheme and where appropriate we provide this as an option to help our students get real experience of training learners to drive as part of their preparation for Part 3 of the qualifying examination. It is like a modern apprenticeship where for 6 months you can operate as a driving instructor either part-time or full.
Can I qualify in 16 weeks or indeed less as some claim?
Probably not. You may come across a great deal of confusing information regarding this question, mainly from driving instructor training companies trying to sign you up quickly and take your money. The DVSA is responsible for organising and carrying out ADI examinations. The application and administrative process means that it is very difficult to fully qualify in less than six months. Intensive driving instructor training or fast track driving instructor training can simply provide a quick return for the driving instructor training provider at the expense of the student. Test waiting times particularly for Parts 2 and 3 can be up to 12 weeks each as can the initial DBS check needed before you can apply for Part 1.
Is ORDIT a guarantee that I will receive the best training?
No is the honest answer. ORDIT sets a minimum lesson standard for those ADIs who want to teach people to become driving instructors in-car. Results vary considerably between DVSA ORDIT registered instructors in the same way that driving instructor's pass rates vary despite them all being on the DVSA ADI Register. ORDIT basically shows that the trainer was able to deliver at least a one hour lesson in the car to someone wanting to be an instructor to a good standard correcting any mistakes they made. It does not mean the training course they provide is adequate or sufficient for you to qualify or they have the means to get you the on-the-job-practice you will need or provide the job prospects thereafter.
Can you train me and pick me up from my home
Provided your home is close to a suitable training area and near an ADI Part 3 test centre this would potentially be possible. If this is not the case it would be better for you to meet your trainer at the training area rather than having them waste valuable training time picking you up and dropping you off from home. The last thing you want is to conduct the training near your home if it isn't suitable as this would simply increase your chances of failure.
What happens if I fail?
At LDC we are confident that following your individually structured driving instructor learning programme you will have the very best chance of passing the qualifying exam. However, should you fail any part of the exam we will provide additional free driving instructor training to ensure that you pass if you purchased the Premium Course option.
Am I tied into the driving school?
No. Whilst most people who train with us go on to acquire an LDC driving school franchise, you are under no obligation. Once qualified, if you wish to go your own way you are free to do so. This is not the case with all training providers. With some driving schools you are committed to remain with them and pay their fees for up to 1, 2 or indeed 3 years whether they provide you with sufficient work or not. Another sales ploy is to offer additional training to help you pass your part 3 exam but only if you join the franchise. Check all contracts!
Is there an incentive to sign up today?
No. Unlike many other companies LDC insist you take sufficient time, away from the company, to make absolutely certain it is what you want to do before you sign any agreements or pay any money. Those companies who have something to hide will always press you for a quick decision. A decision of this importance should at least be considered over a few weeks - not a few days. Although you have 14 days to cancel under the distance buying regulations online companies get you to waive this right in return for being able to login and start the online study straight away - then it is too late you have lost your money because you have started the course. Remember telephone sales people are good at selling as that is their job to get you to part with your money. Unfortunately thousands waste money every year buying such courses and this is the main reason why the national pass rates are so low.
Those companies who offer a limited special deal just do so to get you to impulse buy before you can find out the truth about what they are really offering or how unfavourable it compares to other companies such as LDC. So don't be fooled, take your time, do your research and request everything in writing.
Can you guarantee me a pass?
No. Irrespective of which instructor training company your are considering the honest answer to this question is no. Those who appear to offer a guarantee of a pass or your training fee back have so many additional conditions attached to it that it is really worthless. For example some make you revisit the training and fail the test up to six times (i.e. taking you at least another 4 years to complete two more cycles all at your expense. Then in the next two years if you fail three times again and having proven you did a massive amount of additional study etc. you may get a refund in year 5 after your first failed attempt. Nobody will do this so probably no one has gained a refund of their initial course fee. These guarantees are simply to fool you into signing up.
About the career opportunity
Is my income/number of pupils guaranteed?
No. Irrespective of which driving school your are considering the honest answer to this question is no and it is possible to be out of pocket at the end of the week if you haven't earned sufficient money to cover the cost of the car and any fees due to the driving school. However, the way LDC operates makes this far less likely to occur than with those who charge a high weekly or monthly franchise fee especially as we provide the first month franchise free if you trained with us.
The only way you can determine if the school will be able to deliver the career prospects you expect, is to make sure you fully understand how the school operates and what unique features it has to offer to the public that will in turn help you to be successful in a very competitive marketplace.
Be very wary of any company claiming you will be given all the work you need or stating you don't have to pay the franchise fee if insufficient work is provided - in our experience it inevitably turns out not to be true.
Finally, some training providers do appear to guarantee your first years earnings by offering to give you your training fee back if you don't earn £30,000 on their franchise. However, this simply means you are committed to paying 12 months franchise fee (i.e. paying upwards of £8,000) to possibly get back the much smaller training course fee whether you got sufficient work to pay the £8,000 or not! In other words it is basically worthless. Beware of any guarantees they are designed to appear to promise a lot but in our experience give you very little. The purpose is simply to get you to impulse buy a training course were the vast majority never complete the course or get what they thought they had paid for - see the small print. They are basically trying to get you to falsely believe there is no need to look elsewhere with our guarantees.
If they offer GUARANTEES - read all the small print and you will soon discover it to be a CON.
Can I work part time with LDC?
Yes. Unlike most driving schools that have high franchise fees, LDC operates a more flexible low cost franchise that allows you to structure your business in the way that suits you whilst at the same time providing a fair income for the driving lessons carried out. The LDC franchise is not only ideal for those who want to work part time on a permanent basis it's also possible to start working on a part time basis (while keeping any existing job) so that you can check out the job before fully committing to it.
Do I get a choice of car?
Yes. Most major driving schools dictate the car you will drive. However, with LDC you have several options. You can drive a car of your own; you can purchase a new car through LDC at a significant discount, or rent a driving school car at a highly competitive rate. The choice of car is yours as long as it is suitable for the job. We have access to most popular makes and model. This is another example of the flexibility driving instructors enjoy with LDC.
Can I meet with someone from LDC before joining?
Yes. We at LDC always prefer to meet with applicants prior to commencing training to get to know more about you and ensure that you are fully informed about what is involved before any commitment is made, we can also offer a phone call or virtual meet too. Indeed we are the only driving school or training organisation that lists all or instructors (including trainee instructors) with their telephone numbers and contact email addresses on our main website.
Am I my own boss?
Yes. With most other national driving schools you will not feel like your own boss because of the many restrictions they place upon you. With LDC you have a lot of freedom including the choice of car you use and what services from us you decide to buy. Only the core membership is compulsory. This enables us to provide the least expensive national franchise currently in the market place - with a low cost making it ideal for those wishing to only work part time.