The driving test

The driving test is part of the licensing process. To progress from a learner licence to a provisional P1 licence, you need to pass the driving test.

Changes to the Graduated Licensing Scheme from 20 November 2017

Changes are coming to the testing you need to progress through the licensing stages. In addition, P2 drivers who get suspended for unsafe driving will end up adding an extra 6 months to the time they need to spend on their P2 licence. Read more about these changes. about Changes to the Graduated Licensing Scheme from 20 November 2017

What is the driving test?

The driving test is a practical, on-road test that you take with a Roads and Maritime or Service NSW testing officer. It focuses on hazard perception and has been designed for learners with extensive driving experience.

The on-road driving test assesses your driving skills, decision making, awareness of other road users, and how you share the road with other traffic. If you pass, you’ll be issued with a provisional P1 licence.

Note: Driving tests are only valid for one month. If you don’t take out a licence within a month of passing the test, you will need to pass another test before being eligible for a licence.

If you fail, you have to wait at least seven days before you can attempt another test.

More information about the test is available in the Guide to the Driving Test .

When to take the test

You can take the driving test once you are at least 17 years old, have held your learner licence for at least 12 months, and have completed 120 hours in your learner driver log book. Log book hours can be recorded in a paper log book, or in one of the digital log book apps.

You should not feel under any pressure to take the test. You can continue to practice driving on your learner licence for as long as you need, provided you renew it. However, every time you renew your learner licence, you need to take and pass the Driver Knowledge Test (DKT).

If you’re 25 or older, you don’t need to complete the Learner Driver Log Book, and can attempt the test even if you’ve held your learner licence for less than 12 months.

If you’re converting an interstate or overseas licence, you may also need to take a driving test. In this case you can take the test without holding a learner licence first. See Moving to NSW for more information.

Booking your driving test

When you’re ready to take the test, you’ll need to make a booking and pay the test fee.

Important: If you're using a digital log book app to record your driving experience, you'll need to submit your driving record through the app before you can book a driving test.

You can book your driving test online, by phoning 13 22 13, or in person at any registry or service centre.

Taking your driving test

At your booked time, you’ll need to attend the nominated location to do your test. You’ll need to provide a completed Licence Application form and prove your identity. If you've used a paper log book to record your driving hours, you'll also need to hand over your completed log book, unless you're exempt from the log book requirement.

You must have a person with you who holds a full driver licence – if you fail your test you will not be able to drive away on your own.

You also need to provide a suitable car for the test. The car must be roadworthy and ready to drive – the testing officer will check the car, and may cancel the test if it is considered unsuitable. The Guide to the Driving Test  provides detailed information about what the testing officer will look for.

The only people permitted in the car while you take the test are you, the testing officer and in some situations a Roads and Maritime monitoring officer. The monitoring officer’s job is to watch the testing officer and make sure that the test is conducted properly. No other person is permitted in the car during the test.

If there is any suspicion that you have recently taken alcohol or another drug, the test will be cancelled, and there will be no refund of the test fee.

If you offer money, some other bribe, or try to influence a testing officer, the test will be stopped and you may be taken to a police station and charged with offering a bribe.

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