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Restarting driver and rider testing: DVSA Update (17/08/20)

Restarting driver and rider testing: update

We let you know that we were restarting testing and training in a phased approach. Here's an update on some of the main areas.

Theory test availability

We've reopened most of our theory test centres in England, Scotland and Wales. 

In England and Wales, we've worked with Pearson VUE to change the 2 metre social distancing rule to 1 metre with risk mitigations in place. This means we're now able to offer more appointments and reduce waiting times.

We will also work with the devolved administration in Scotland to continue to offer more appointments as soon as we can.

Driving test availability

We've opened 291 out of 307 driving centres in England - up from 290 since we updated you on 7 August 2020.

31 out of 35 test centres in Wales have reopened today (17 August).

When candidates arrange a test, they can see available appointments within the next 6 weeks. We're not taking bookings any further in advance at the moment. This is so we can react quickly to any changes in government guidance about coronavirus.

Test centres in Scotland remain closed, except for motorcycle tests and critical workers. We will continue to monitor COVID-19 advice from the Scottish Government.

Emailing candidates to arrange their test

Over 210,000 driving tests were put on hold due to coronavirus. We have now emailed all candidates in England and Wales to ask them to rearrange their test - over 170,000 candidates in total.

Some of the email addresses given on bookings did not work, so we're sending text messages or letters to those affected so they can rearrange their test.

DVSA customer service centre

Our customer service centre is still receiving an extremely high number of calls and emails.

We're sorry for the delays in getting through, but please help us by only calling if absolutely necessary.

Emergency tests for critical workers

We announced that the services to apply for emergency theory tests and driving tests for critical workers closed on Friday 14 August.

We have now invited all critical workers in England, Scotland and Wales to either:

  • book a new test, if they did not have one cancelled due to coronavirus

  • rearrange their cancelled test

Returning to the UK

If you or your pupil have entered the UK in the last 14 days, you must not go to a driving test unless you:

  • arrived from a country on the ‘travel corridor’ list

  • belong to one of the groups who do not have to self-isolate

The government keeps the conditions in countries on the travel corridor list under review, and it is regularly updated. 

France, the Netherlands, Monaco, Malta, Turks and Caicos Islands and Aruba have now been removed from the list.

Check the list regularly for the latest information.

Valid theory test certificates checks

As part of our normal ID and eligibility checks our driving examiners are checking for valid theory test certificates.

If your pupil does not have a valid certificate the test will not go ahead.

If your pupil has lost or damaged their certificate they can apply for a replacement letter by contacting They’ll need to provide their:

  • name

  • address

  • date of birth

  • driving licence number

More information

Check GOV.UK for the latest about:

  • theory tests

  • driving tests

  • instructor guidance

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