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How Many Mistakes Are Allowed in a Driving Test?

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    If you have a driving test soon, one of the questions you’ll have is whether you are allowed to make mistakes in a driving test. What happens if you make more than one mistake in a driving test? When can you retake a test after making a mistake? 

Making mistakes in a driving test is usual! Don’t worry. However, remember to have enough practice behind the wheel, and stay calm before the test. Here’s everything you should know about mistakes in a driving test. 

How Many Mistakes Are Allowed in a Driving Test?

How long is a driving test? 

You can finish your driving test in about 40 to 45 minutes if you’re well-prepared and come with a well-maintained car. If you fail the test, you can reappear after 10 days. 

Common mistakes in a driving test 

Here are some of the most common mistakes people make in a driving test: 

Not driving a proper car 

Give your car the same preparation as you have. An improper car can ruin your test in a few seconds. So, check if your car has enough fuel, the necessary certificates, and the insurance documents. Next, see to it that you use license plates both at the front and back of the car. Ensure you use an L sign board when bringing your car for a driving test.  

Coming unprepared 

One of the biggest mistakes you should always avoid is coming unprepared for the test. See to it that you get at least 40-45 hours of practice behind the wheel so that you’re confident. Practice helps you stay confident and excel at driving.  

Driving schools usually make sure that you have enough practice before the test. However, if a friend or a relative has trained you, see to it that you get up to 22 hours of training for a confident attempt. 

Skipping traffic signals 

Knowing traffic signals is important before you appear for a driving test. These signals make sure that you’re moving in the right direction without disturbing other drivers. Moreover, you may find it difficult to know the traffic from different directions.  

Therefore, be thorough with the signals. In fact, one of the main reasons for reckless driving is skipping traffic signals. According to the DMV in most states, almost 11% of candidates fail their driving tests by missing traffic signals. 

Avoid distractions 

Even after you get your license, distracted driving is a drawback when you’re behind the wheel. Be it any kind of distractions- loud music, cell phones, or talking to your co-passenger-avoid them all. Watch out for vehicles and drive cautiously. 

Unprofessional lane changing 

Lane-keeping is a major rule you need to keep in mind. Use signals when you’re changing lanes, and use the rear-view mirrors to double-check if the road is clear. Similarly, know the right way to change lanes. The right way to make a lane change is to use the signal in your direction, check the road for traffic, check the road for clear roads, and then switch lanes safely. 

How many mistakes are allowed in a driving test?

How many mistakes are allowed during a driving test? 

To pass a driving test, you must limit your errors to fewer than 30 minor mistakes. If you make more than 30 mistakes, you may fail the test. Hence, you must reappear for the test in case you fail. 

How many mistakes are allowed in a written driving test? 

You are allowed to attempt an online written driving test twice. To attempt it three times, you’ll have to appear directly at the DMV office. 

How many mistakes are allowed in a practical driving test? 

First off, be confident before you appear for a driving test. Also, relax and stay calm before the test.  

While it’s okay to make mistakes, see to it that you limit yourselves to 15 or fewer minor mistakes in your practical driving test. 

What happens if you fail the driving test three times in a row? 

Failing or making major mistakes three times in a row means you may have to renew your registration for a driving test. Also, before you reappear for your next attempt, make sure to have more practice behind the wheel. In some states, you can only access the portal and reappear for the driving test after four to five months. Therefore, it is ideal to confirm the rules with your state DMV. 

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Checklist to avoid mistakes in the driving test 

The DMV recommends that you bring a few important proofs with you to your driving test. One of the major mistakes people usually make in a driving test is missing out on important documents. Some of them are: 

  • An ID proof:  You can use a voter’s id, or a passport as ID proof for a driving test. 
  • A license application: Remember to fill out the license application before you appear for a driving license. If you are below 18, get the sign of your parent or guardian on the application. 
  • Residential proof: Always make sure to carry address proof before you go for your driving test. 
  • Behind-the-wheel training certificate: One of the ways to avoid mistakes in a driving test and stay confident for your test is to get a behind-the-wheel certificate from your driving school. This certificate makes you an eligible candidate. 
  • Proof of financial responsibility: As you know, you need to bring your car for the driving test. On the day before the test, make sure that you’ve got your car insurance documents as proof. 
  • Application fee: Don’t forget to pay the fee before you go for your test. Also, carry the proof of payment before appearing for the test. 
  • Your car: On the day before the driving test, check whether your car is in good condition. Confirm fuel levels, check for flat tires, and clean your car seats. 
  • Certification of driver’s course completion– One of the major mistakes that applicants tend to make on the day of their driving test is forgetting the course completion certificate. Keep the certificates ready on the day before the test. 
  • School enrolment certificates– If you’re below 18, you must show some of your mark list or equivalent certificates to appear for the driving test. 

Last-minute driving test tips 

Here are some tips to avoid mistakes in your driving test: 

  • Choose your nearest location for your driving test. 
  • Appear for the driving test as early as you can. Showing up early reflects your responsibility, and helps you stay calm. 
  • Adjust the hand mirrors and rear-view mirrors before you start driving. 
  • Always allow pedestrians to cross the road first. Stop the car whenever you see pedestrians crossing the road. 
  • Never drive when you see flashing red lights. Also, wait for the lights to stop flashing, and then continue driving. 
  • Another silly yet serious mistake that drivers make during a driving test is forgetting to wear seat belts. Before you start driving, see that both you and your co-passenger have fastened seatbelts. 


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