NEW VIDEO AND RESEARCH: 60% of young drivers still rely on superstitions and lucky pants to pass their driving test!

New AA Driving School video to tackle pre-test fears:

A quarter of drivers resorted to extra measures such as lucky pants, superstitions or a long drive to get their nerves in check before their driving test, reveals the AA Driving School*.

60% of young drivers aged 18-to-24 were by far the most likely to turn to extra measures – 7% admitted to wearing lucky pants, 6% said they carried a lucky charm and 9% said they took herbal remedies such as Rescue Remedy before their practical test.

A long drive or having a lesson before the test was the most popular way of easing tension, with one in five (20%) drivers saying they did this.

  • Only one in ten (13%) drivers said they felt no nerves before their test.
  • Nearly half of all nervous drivers (44%) said their nerves affected their test in some way.
  • Women and younger drivers were the most likely to admit nerves affected them on their test day (52% and 77%).
  • Drivers in Northern Ireland were the most likely to put their faith in superstitions in the run-up to their test, with 2% saying they avoided walking under ladders or crossing the path of black cats before the big day.
  • Last year over 1,700,000 people took their driving test – just 46.7% passed

Edmund King, AA President, said: “Passing your driving test and getting on the road is a real milestone for many people.

“While we’d be more likely to advocate an extra lesson or two to combat pre-test nerves, if wearing lucky pants helps someone feel more confident on their test day and they pass as a result, then good for them.”

The top ways that nerves affected drivers were:

  1. Made minor mistakes – but still passed their test
  2. Woke up early
  3. Had a bad night’s sleep beforehand
  4. Made a serious mistake that led to a failed test
  5. Couldn’t eat before the test
  6. Had a sudden ‘blank moment’ about something they knew how to do
  7. Said something silly to the examiner
  8. Couldn’t stop shaking
  9. Vomiting
  10. Got lost on the way to the test centre

AA advice on how to combat driving anxiety here:

And spare a thought for these drivers who spent most of their test feeling less than fresh.

“I remember sweating so much that I had to pull over to wipe my brow and clean my spectacles! And put talcum powder on my hands!”

“Sweated profusely and the instructor had to open the windows to clear them!”

Finally, let’s remember the poor person who almost accidently bribed their examiner…

“I handed my instructor £20 instead of my license, and it looked like a bribe.”

The AA Driving School has created a new video designed to help learners combat their test nerves and pass with flying colours: