The Official Driving Test/Road Tests Tips Thread | Lounge

By: Jonathan Kwan
May 28, 2008

From the archives: This article has originally appeared on our forums.

Every forum has it, so let me write one up too.

Here's one for the province of Alberta. Feel free to write something specific to your province or area (BC and Toronto would be nice if you still have this memorable sheet). Some background stuff for basic passenger vehicle licensing:

Class 7: Minimum age 14, must have a Class 5 full license passenger beside you at all times. Must hold for 1 year.
Class 5 Probationary (Basic): Minimum age 16, 7 demerits, 0 alcohol level, cannot accompany class 7, must hold for 2 years
Class 5 (Advanced/Full/whatever): Minimum age 18.

Here's some tips and guide to the Alberta road test. Most tests should be similar, but below is an example of the Class 5 Probationary examiner's checklist. I'll go over what each means.

1. Just your car equipment in general, like signals, wipers, whatever. Better know how to use those. I didn't use the steering wheel correctly with hand positions on left turns, so I got owned 15 points. The guy can put that in category 2 as well.
2. Just hand position in steering. Do two handed hand-over-hand steering at all times.
3. Generally the smoothness of straightening the wheels after a turn. Watch out for torque steer if you are flooring it on a FWD on a turn (Don't do that heh)
4, 5, 6. Do yourself a favor. Drive a dang automatic to your test. We are in Canada.
7. Most people should not have a problem in this area, but just don't pull your handbrake around a corner, etc.
8. Signal at the right time. Don't do it too far ahead, don't do it too late. Around 20-30m depending on speed is good. The class 5 basic is in city so that's a good reference. I failed my driving test twice before and one guy docked me marks there, so it really depends on who you get.
9. This one is self explanatory. Just signal whenever you are turning your wheel unless you are following the bend of the road.

1. If you are driving an auto, just set your vehicle in Park and activate handbrakes. If standard use gear 1 or reverse and handbrake. I don't see why you are using a standard transmission for this test though lol.
2. Look left and look right when backing. Check mirrors. Not hard.
3. Just be confident in your parking and do it right the first time. For parking uphill or downhill make sure you're close enough to the curb (Look at right mirror) and make sure your wheels are right. Set your car in neutral and slowly let it hit the curb and stop.
4. Noob fail.
5. I don't know why you would have this problem, unless you are driving a standard. Or you just forgot your brakes, but if that's the case, then you deserve to be docked marks. tongue.gif
6. Just be confident, don't do it too quickly and not too slowly.

1. Just check your mirrors. It's ok to exaggerate a bit.
2. Shoulder check. Do it even when you are exiting a parallel parking spot. Also when you are driving in a residential area and making a right turn and the right lane is a parking lane, you still need to shoulder check. Signal, shoulder check, as if there will be cars there.
3. Be confident. Be yourself
4. Noob driver alert.
5. Don't tailgate the guy?
6. Just check when it's safe to do so.
7. I don't know how you would get docked points here... read the dang book when you got your learner's.

1. Just always stop before those lines. Bumper before it. At all times. Just do it. But when you do it wrong, it's ok, you won't fail. The moment you shift your car into reverse, it's an auto fail. It's only 10 points.
2. Yeah and don't stop too far back.
3. When in doubt, unless it's prohibited (See instant fail section) then stop, it's only 10 points. JUST DON'T OBSTRUCT TRAFFIC OR VIOLATE LIGHTS/SIGNS. That's an insta-fail (Again, see instant fail section). Sometimes if you don't make a full stop you fail.
4. Do it. Before the pedestrian route.
5. Keep your head up.
6. Get enough practice
7. Left lane to left lane.
8. Get enough practice.
9. Right lane to right lane. Even if it's a parking lane, go into it, and then signal left into the actual driving lane.
10. No idea.
11. Don't floor the gas pedal.
12. Don't drive too slow. Natural.


1. Just expect it coming. Look at the pedestrian signs on the side to see if it's a stale green. Don't make sudden stops or whatever, just don't scare the guy next to you. And don't run red lights.
2. As before.
3. Watch for people and traffic and how the signs appear.


1. Don't brake at every controlled intersection and driveway. It may make you look good but you can get screwed for as bad as traffic obstruction. Just cover your brakes.
2. You know what? When you have right of way (Like an uncontrolled intersection) it's ok to be a bit hesitant. The max you might get is just a few points off. However if you automatically assumed own right of way and you don't you fail.
3. Aggressive driving only gets you 10? Nice.


1. That's assuming you aren't speeding. But let's say you are approaching a bend of the road and it tells you to slow down. Go around the suggested speed limit, also depending on traffic.
2. If it's raining, go slower. Just explain to your examiner. They'll love you for that.

1. Well if you get over 75 points you fail. It's sorta hard though. I only got 15. (I got 25 on my first one, 40 on the second one because the guy was picky. I failed both though lol. The one I passed was exceptional... if only my steering was better. But I do one handed driving anyway, so what the heck)
2. Let's say you are making a turn and there's a pedestrian route. The moment the guy steps on the road and you have a stop sign and they are approaching from the other side, you FAIL. Make sure that when you go through a pedestrian crosswalk no one is on the road at all, regardless.
3. Don't run red lights. Also on right turns, make full stop at red lights. And if it's green, go. Don't freaking stop. That's how I failed my second test. It was otherwise perfect (Also for traffic obstruction)
4. Make a full stop before a stop sign. BEFORE it. Or the line. However some examiners would accept you going past the stop sign, then make a FULL stop, as long as it is 3m before the intersection. It's ok to make a stop before it though.
5. Don't speed, especially through school zones. If it says 50, drive 45. If it's 30, do 25. Don't go right at speed limit to allow some tolerance, and don't drive too slow or you MAY fail.
6. I was explained that it was doing something "otherwise illegal", I don't know.
7. Just don't do it lol. Watch out for that in parallel parking and hill parking when rolling.
8. Slow down to yield speed at an uncontrolled intersection. Usually what happens 80% of the time with uncontrolled are roads with no marked middle line. SLOW DOWN TO YIELD SPEED CAN'T STRESS THAT ENOUGH. Or you fail. If there's a car and you are going straight and it's on your right, STOP. They have the right of way. I know it feels weird but that's the truth. If you go you get an insta-fail for this and right of way violation. Just do it. Cars may honk at you at the back if you stop but for the sake of this test, do it. That's how I failed my first one because the guy yielded to me, but even if they stop and yield to you just dang it stop.
9. Yeah that. Don't stop when unnecessary if there's traffic behind you. Got to be confident. So if you are at a green light turning right and there's cars behind you, just slow down to yield and go. Don't freaking stop or you're screwed.
10. No idea what it means, but when you take the test you have to be pretty good at driving right?
11. Good luck
12. Just make sure you're good at driving lol. These are basics.
13. It's quite vague but don't run people off the road etc. and make sure no guy honks at you for cutting them off or something
14. Not really applicable I guess.

Generally speaking:
- Just be good at driving
- Be natural - don't suck up to the guy, although observe the laws. You'll forget it 3 days later but you know.
- Be alert at all times of everything around you.
- Study this guide.
- Make sure the guy's happy
- And when you have any doubts, ask him, they will explain to you BEFORE THE TEST BEGINS.
- Know your vehicle well.