Go Back  British Expats > Living & Moving Abroad > USA
Reload this Page >

Driving Test

Driving Test

Old Oct 11th 2017, 3:06 pm
  #1  
Just Joined
Thread Starter
 
Dotterelly's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 14
Dotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond repute
Default Driving Test

Thanks Everyone! Advice like this is so helpful - the government pages feel like they're all written in another language most of the time!

Anyone know whether it's easier to pass a driving test in the UK or in the US? I've struggled with passing in the UK (I live in London so driving is horrible), and I was thinking at this point it might be better to wait till I'm in the US and learn to drive there, but some of my family think it would be better to get a UK driving licence before going to America.
Dotterelly is offline  
Old Oct 11th 2017, 3:15 pm
  #2  
Lt Col (Retd)
 
Pulaski's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2001
Location: Dixie, ex UK
Posts: 47,664
Pulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Originally Posted by Dotterelly View Post
.... Anyone know whether it's easier to pass a driving test in the UK or in the US? ....
.... The standard of driving in the US is atrocious, I believe in fair part because the driving test is very basic - rarely more than about ten minutes and seems to hinge on whether you stopped at STOP signs and red lights, and avoided running over more than one pedestrian.

..... I've struggled with passing in the UK (I live in London so driving is horrible), and I was thinking at this point it might be better to wait till I'm in the US and learn to drive there, but some of my family think it would be better to get a UK driving licence before going to America.
IMO you will be a better driver if you have learned good driving techniques sufficient to pass the test in the UK, but honestly you don't need to, and after moving to the US you would have to learn a few different things, not least driving on the other side of the road, and moving the gear lever with your right hand.* The foot pedals are in the same order left - right. ..... And, unless you move to NJ, you would also have to take a US road test.

* In the US there is only one test, not a different one for manual and automatic cars, you take one test and get a license. .... In other words you can take your test in an automatic and then immediately go and drive a manual. That said, manual cars are getting harder and harder to find. .... Except at my house!

Last edited by Pulaski; Oct 11th 2017 at 3:20 pm.
Pulaski is offline  
Old Oct 11th 2017, 3:29 pm
  #3  
Just Joined
Thread Starter
 
Dotterelly's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 14
Dotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Yeah, my main issue with passing a driving test in the UK is that I'm Dyspraxic - it means that it takes much longer to get stuff to stick in my muscle memory and I often have to use brain power to do movements other people can do without thinking (when I'm tired I have to really concentrate just to walk in a straight line). I can drive a manual car well enough, and I can deal with the english road rules, but trying to do both at once on a narrow London street with cars parked both sides and pedestrians all over the place uses all my energy. I've failed 5 driving tests, each with only one major and a small number of minors. I feel competent to drive, but the extra stress of the exam is just too much. Passing in America where the roads are much wider and the test is easier in an automatic car so I don't have to use half my concentration controlling the gears is really appealing.
Dotterelly is offline  
Old Oct 11th 2017, 3:32 pm
  #4  
BE Forum Addict
 
BenK91's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2015
Location: Denver, CO.
Posts: 1,467
BenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Originally Posted by Dotterelly View Post
Yeah, my main issue with passing a driving test in the UK is that I'm Dyspraxic - it means that it takes much longer to get stuff to stick in my muscle memory and I often have to use brain power to do movements other people can do without thinking (when I'm tired I have to really concentrate just to walk in a straight line). I can drive a manual car well enough, and I can deal with the english road rules, but trying to do both at once on a narrow London street with cars parked both sides and pedestrians all over the place uses all my energy. I've failed 5 driving tests, each with only one major and a small number of minors. I feel competent to drive, but the extra stress of the exam is just too much. Passing in America where the roads are much wider and the test is easier in an automatic car so I don't have to use half my concentration controlling the gears is really appealing.
If anything I'd say you need to concentrate here more than you would in London!

17/18 year olds driving around in big SUV's and trucks, lorry drivers that quite literally give zero shit's about anyone within a 5 mile radius of them etc etc.

Just because the roads here are wide and straight, doesn't mean people are capable of keeping it within the white lines as I see every day on my commute.
BenK91 is offline  
Old Oct 11th 2017, 3:38 pm
  #5  
Just Joined
Thread Starter
 
Dotterelly's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 14
Dotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Ha, I feel like I'll just treat any lorries like I treat the big tankers going in and out of Southampton when sailing in the Solent - give them the widest berth possible!
Dotterelly is offline  
Old Oct 11th 2017, 3:44 pm
  #6  
Lt Col (Retd)
 
Pulaski's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2001
Location: Dixie, ex UK
Posts: 47,664
Pulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Originally Posted by BenK91 View Post
If anything I'd say you need to concentrate here more than you would in London!

17/18 year olds driving around in big SUV's and trucks, lorry drivers that quite literally give zero shit's about anyone within a 5 mile radius of them etc etc.

Just because the roads here are wide and straight, doesn't mean people are capable of keeping it within the white lines as I see every day on my commute.
Yeah, despite the wide roads, driving off the side of the road, or into on-coming traffic is scarily common. There is a recurring news report that I first noticed shortly after moving hete, and I still see/hear it regularly in the news, like every couple of weeks: the driver either (1) drove into on-coming traffic or (2) off the side of the road, they then either (1) hit a tree, or (2) over-corrected, came back onto the road and either (1) drove into on-coming traffic or (2) off the other side of the road, and hit a tree. The result is always the same - the driver died. .... Last week the report was of exactly such an incident where someone drove off the side of the interstate, in the middle of a sunny afternoon, and hit a tree!

A former colleague, who was a cop in Florida, reported that it is exactly the same there, except people drive into ditches, rivers, ponds, and lakes, instead of hitting trees.
Pulaski is offline  
Old Oct 11th 2017, 3:49 pm
  #7  
Just Joined
Thread Starter
 
Dotterelly's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 14
Dotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

My younger sister was in a car accident when the car she was a passenger in went too fast round a bend and hit a tree. She had a lap belt on and it drove into her gut and damaged her internal organs. The roads around where my partner lives in Iowa didn't seem so bad, but he isn't in a big town or anything.
Dotterelly is offline  
Old Oct 11th 2017, 3:50 pm
  #8  
Lt Col (Retd)
 
Pulaski's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2001
Location: Dixie, ex UK
Posts: 47,664
Pulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond reputePulaski has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Originally Posted by Dotterelly View Post
My younger sister was in a car accident when the car she was a passenger in went too fast round a bend and hit a tree. She had a lap belt on and it drove into her gut and damaged her internal organs. The roads around where my partner lives in Iowa didn't seem so bad, but he isn't in a big town or anything.
AFAIK roads don't have bends in Iowa!
Pulaski is offline  
Old Oct 12th 2017, 3:00 pm
  #9  
Forum Regular
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 60
iarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond reputeiarnell has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
A former colleague, who was a cop in Florida, reported that it is exactly the same there, except people drive into ditches, rivers, ponds, and lakes, instead of hitting trees.
Then get attacked by gators?
iarnell is offline  
Old Oct 12th 2017, 3:37 pm
  #10  
 
BritInParis's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: Not in Paris
Posts: 16,356
BritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
AFAIK roads don't have bends in Iowa!
Once drove from Des Moines up into Minnesota cross country. Flat as a pancake and not a curve in sight. Just endless fields of wheat and amusing statues outside each little identikit town relating to its name.
BritInParis is offline  
Old Oct 12th 2017, 3:50 pm
  #11  
BE Forum Addict
 
BenK91's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2015
Location: Denver, CO.
Posts: 1,467
BenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond reputeBenK91 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Originally Posted by BritInParis View Post
Once drove from Des Moines up into Minnesota cross country. Flat as a pancake and not a curve in sight. Just endless fields of wheat and amusing statues outside each little identikit town relating to its name.
Damn. I thought nothing could be worse than driving across Wyoming with it's 2-3 bends
BenK91 is offline  
Old Oct 12th 2017, 4:00 pm
  #12  
Just Joined
Thread Starter
 
Dotterelly's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 14
Dotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond reputeDotterelly has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Driving Test

Oh man, some of my boyfriend's family live in a place called Lakeview. All their signage has sailing boats but no one sails on their lake, it's all just powerboats, and as a semi sailor that makes me amused and kinda sad.

But yeah, Iowa seemed pretty straightforward so far as roads are concerned, the entire state is one big grid of roads and fields. That said, I know my boyfriend has come off the road a couple of times due to slippery conditions in the winter.
Dotterelly is offline  
Old Oct 12th 2017, 6:32 pm
  #13  
 
BritInParis's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2012
Location: Not in Paris
Posts: 16,356
BritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond reputeBritInParis has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Which immigration process is for me?

Originally Posted by BenK91 View Post
Damn. I thought nothing could be worse than driving across Wyoming with it's 2-3 bends
Wyoming is the Monaco Grand Prix circuit in comparison

To answer the OP's actual question I would concur with her relatives and opine that if she can obtain her full GB driving licence before she goes to the US (to live?) then that would be preferable.
BritInParis is offline  
Old Oct 12th 2017, 7:16 pm
  #14  
The Hamburgler Incarnate!
 
Joined: Aug 2014
Location: Lansdale, PA
Posts: 52
Karlosthecackle is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: Driving Test

I actually thought the driving test at Lego Land in Windsor was harder than the one in PA!
Karlosthecackle is offline  
Old Oct 13th 2017, 3:01 pm
  #15  
Austin. TX.
 
petitefrancaise's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2013
Posts: 5,578
petitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Driving Test

Originally Posted by Karlosthecackle View Post
I actually thought the driving test at Lego Land in Windsor was harder than the one in PA!

coffee on the keyboard! Thanks!
petitefrancaise is offline  

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.