The driving test
Driver testing in Ireland is carried out directly by the Road Safety Authority to a standard that complies with the EU Directive on Driving Licences.
From 1st February 2011 the driving test fees are:
|A, A2, A1, B, BE, AM,W
|All other categories
|CPC Driving Test (Bus and Truck Category)
||€152 (Driving Test Part 1- €120, |
Part 2- €32)
You can now apply and pay for your driving test online. You will need a credit card to do this (Visa or Mastercard) or a debit card(Laser) plus a valid e-mail address. Alternatively, you can download a driving test application form, or obtain a copy from any motor tax office.
Payment should be made by cheque, postal order or money order. These should be crossed and made payable to the Road Safety Authority. The correct fee must accompany your completed application form. Fees are non-transferable but you can cancel your test on two occasions, once you give ten days notice, without forfeiting your fee. If, after making a driving test application, you do not wish to proceed with the application, you may apply within 14 days of payment for a refund of your test fee (provided you are not scheduled for an appointment within that time).
Taking the test
The driving test is a rite of passage for most people – up there with your first day at school and learning to ride a bicycle. The test has a bit of a daunting reputation but the pass rates are probably higher than you think. And, as with any examination, with an instructor and proper preparation you have a good chance of passing.
To pass the driving test you will need to:
- Maintain proper control over the vehicle at all times
- Show anticipation and awareness
- Take proper precautions when moving off, stopping, overtaking, changing direction and meeting other traffic
- Make safe and reasonable progress when driving and when meeting and crossing the path of other vehicles
To do the test, you must have held a valid learner permit for at least six months on the day of the test for cars, motorcyclists and works vehicles(in the case of a first time learner permit holders, the code 991 will be printed under the restrictions/information section on your learner permit opposite the vehicle category) . You must also have the use of a suitable vehicle. Also mandatory car lessons may apply to you, see information on Initial Basic Training(IBT) for Motorcyclists and Esssential Driver Training(EDT) for car drivers.
Preparing for your driving test
- Unnecessarily obstruct traffic or annoy other road users
- Practise on driving test routes for the most part; congestion on these routes causes inconvenience to residents and test applicants alike
Appointments for driving tests are organised on a first-come-first-served basis approximately one month in advance of your test. This will indicate the time, date and venue for the test together with conditions which must be met. Please read this notice carefully as it may help avoid problems on the day of the test.
It will also set out the arrangements for cancelling your appointment should this prove necessary.
If you apply online, you may be able to schedule your own test appointment if there are slots available.
Testing is conducted out of many test centres throughout the country. Where possible, your test will be arranged for the centre you nominate on your application form.
You can apply for your driving test to be conducted through Irish (just complete the Irish language version of the application form and submit as normal).
Day of the test
You should be present in the test centre before the appointed time of your test. If you are late, the test cannot be conducted and the fee will be forfeit.
The driver tester will check your learner permit to establish that it is:
- Yours and not someone else’s
- For the correct category of vehicle
- For your EDT logbook, if applicable
It is important to remember that even if you are sitting your driving test for the second or subsequent time, and you have completed EDT, you must bring your logbook with you to your test re-sit.
If you are sitting a motorcycle test, you will need to bring your Vehicle Registration Certificate which confirms details regarding the motorcycle you present to test with (i.e. power output in kW, engine cc, power to weight ratio, make, model, and registration number). If your motorcycle is restricted in power, you will need to bring the certificate which provides proof of compliance or restriction. This must be a certificate or on headed paper from an official source.
If you are sitting a test in category C, you will need to bring the vehicle certificate of roadworthiness for the vehicle you are bringing to test with you. You will also need to have your vehicle meeting the minimum “real total mass” requirements. Visit the Real Total Mass section of our website information to see how you need to prepare for the vehicle category you are sitting your test in.
If you are taking a test in category CE, you need to bring with you to the test a weight declaration form completed from a weigh bridge to verify the weight of the combination for presentation to the driver tester on the day of the driving test. This weight declaration must show the following details:
- Registration number of the tractor unit/drawing vehicle
- The Trailer mark (Registration number of the trailer)
- The weigh bridge docket must be dated and has a validity period of 12 months from date of issue.
- The unladen weight of the combination.
You will be asked to read and sign a statement confirming that:
What if I cannot make it to the test centre due to bad weather or road conditions
In most cases tests will be cancelled and this information will be put on our website www.rsa.ie as soon as updates become available. We will also try to send text messages where possible. In some cases there may be localised dangerous road conditions caused by ice, frost, snow, floods etc.; in such cases the advice is always the same - do not take any risks or travel to the test centre. In such circumstances please advise us that you are cancelling your test via the test cancellation form or by leaving a message on our 24 hour cancellation line at 1890 40 60 40. Your test will be cancelled and another test arranged for you free of charge.
The driving test for cars lasts half-an-hour to 40 minutes and includes:
- Questions on the Rules of the Road (including identifying road signs)
- Demonstrating hand signals
- Reversing round a corner
- A U-turn in the road
- A hill start
- Driving approximately five miles in a variety of road and traffic conditions
Your driving will be assessed in the following situations:
- Moving off
- Driving in traffic
- Stopping Reversing around a corner
- Turning about, to face in the opposite direction
- Starting on a hill
Aspects of your driving assessed will include:
- Road positioning
- Overtaking and passing
- Anticipation and observation
- Use of mirrors and signals
- Progress Speed
- Compliance with traffic lights, road signs and markings
- Use of the vehicle controls (accelerator, clutch, gears, brakes and steering)
- Use of secondary controls such as wipers, de-misters, etc