- The opportunity to help others get out on the road (safely!).
- Flexibility – being able to work to your own schedule.
- Seeing the progress that your students are making.
- Helping transform even the most underconfident pupils into safe competent drivers.
- Meeting new people.
What are the challenges?
- Unpredictability. It can be difficult to know what your students are going to do next. And although you may have dual controls, you have to make sure you’re on the ball and can react quickly if things don’t go to plan.
- Costs related to the car you use to teach in. Because your car will be used so often by learners, it will experience more wear and tear than usual and is likely to need repairs carrying out more often. You’ll also have things like petrol and insurance costs, which can be high.
- Relying on your car for business. If your car breaks down, or has to go into the garage for repairs for any length of time, then you won’t be able to work during that period.
- Dealing with unreliable students. Driving Instructors sometimes take on students who turn out to be flaky or unreliable, meaning they don’t always turn up to lessons, or they cancel at the last minute. This means that you may have to implement policies to prevent this, for example, charging students for last minute cancellations.
How much will I earn?
As a Driving Instructor, you’ll usually earn £20-£30 per hour, depending on what area(s) you teach in and whether you choose to take a franchise route with a driving school, or be your own boss. It will also depend on whether you decide to charge for blocks of lessons, or offer people intensive driving courses, which may work out at a slightly different rate.
It’s important to tally up the cost of your overheads (especially when working on a self-employed basis), and work out how much you need to charge to make a profit.
Are there opportunities to progress?
A lot of the progress you make as a Driving Instructor will be linked to your reputation e.g. how many students you’ve successfully taught to drive, and how many students are recommending you to other people because they were happy with your service. However, there are also opportunities to move into other areas, such as becoming a Driving Test Examiner, offering more advanced courses e.g. Pass Plus, or training Driving Instructors.
How do I get started?
To become an Approved Driving Instructor (ADI), you’ll need to complete a fairly straightforward three-step process.
- Apply to the Driving Standards Vehicle Agency (DVSA) who will assess your suitability for the role. They usually accept people who are: