Introductory driving lesson offers like five lessons for £50 might seem a good deal but here’s what they’re not telling you.
What’s wrong with driving lesson offers?
Driving lesson offers like 5 lessons for £50 are for the schools benefit, not yours.
Driving schools make money by charging their instructors between £50 to £300 a week to be supplied with pupils.
These people are not always fully qualified instructors. Even if they are, they’ll often take them on no matter how bad they are to make more money.
That’s why schools have to desperately flog cheap lessons: to feed all these people they’re taking on to work as instructors.
Trainee instructors have not passed a very difficult exam to prove they can teach. The pass rate for this exam in Birmingham in 2020 was just 27.9%.
That means thousands of people are learning with someone who can’t teach.
You can watch me examining instructors in my videos to find out more about this.
Is learning with a trainee instructor bad?
Not always but a trainee’s inexperience could end up costing you more if they don’t know what they’re doing. They may have never even had a pupil pass before, have never been on a driving test before and don’t know the required standard to pass.
The majority of trainees never qualify meaning you’ll end up looking for a new instructor and spending more money when they fail their exams.
I don’t use trainees but I am not against them. I am one of the UK’s leading driving instructor trainers and I spend a lot of time helping new instructors. Go and search for ADI training and you’ll see I come up everywhere. I think everyone should be told if they’re learning with a trainee.
I was a trainee once but some people just want to learn, pass and not be held back by their instructors inexperience. Trainees are learning on the job and you’re paying for their mistakes.
Compare this to my experience. I have been teaching for over 20 years, taught 1,000+ pupils and I’ve sat in on over 400 driving tests.
What about fully qualified instructors at schools?
Why would a great instructor be working at a driving school?
Driving schools are sometimes just a collection of bad instructors. They can’t get work on their own because nobody recommends them so they have to rely on an agency (that’s what driving schools really are) to get them work.
Instructors like myself survive through recommendations, reputation and constantly giving people the best service and tuition.
Instructors at driving schools survive because the school has a big wad of cash to spend on advertising.
Which of those is the better reason for choosing an instructor?
No trick driving lessons offers here!
Driving lesson offers are bad for instructors too
Instructors suffer from these offers too.
Many instructors have pupils that take 5 cheap lessons then leave. Then they have another pupil that takes a few cheap lessons and leaves.
The instructor is losing money on these offers and the pupils can get sent a bill for the full price of the lessons when they leave.
Imagine how demotivating it is for an instructor to work for £10 an hour when they should be earning at least double that. Will they have any incentive to teach properly?
The instructor must pay the school their weekly fee no matter how little they’re earning. That means the school is still getting paid they same but the poor instructor is struggling to survive.
Introductory offers are often just a lose-lose situation for pupils and instructors. The only winner is the greedy person running the driving school who takes all the money from their poor instructors.
Problems with driving lesson offers
Here are some of the other things I’ve heard from pupils and instructors that have come to me from schools with intro offers:
- The 5 cheap hours are not always the first 5 hours. The cheap hours were hours 1, 10, 20, 30 etc. Between those cheap hours you pay full price.
- I have met pupils that paid £100 in advance and didn’t like their instructor on the first lesson. In one case they sent them an instructor that didn’t even speak the same language! That one hour lesson cost them £100 because there were no refunds.
- The introductory driving lessons are not always an hour-long as you’d expect. If the usual rate is £24 an hour and the intro lessons are only 30 minutes long for £12 each then you’ve saved nothing!
- Some driving schools with offers will charge you £100 to take a driving test. That’s how they make the money back from the into offers, plus some extra.
- Some schools with intro offers encourage their instructors to drag lessons out to make the money back.
- You could be hit with a price rise soon after starting to make up for them losing money on the intro offers.
They’re always going to make the money back from you somehow.
Why to avoid schools with intro offers
I’d rather not deal with a company that tries to trick me with a fake price.
You see a deal like “Free phone, nothing to pay for 6 months.”. Then after the free 6 months ends you’re on an 18 month contract at £80 a month.
Offers like that really annoy me because those companies treat you like you’re stupid and are tricking you into being with them. They know they can only attract work by appearing cheap. Nobody would choose to be with them otherwise.
I’d rather choose a company that doesn’t hide their real prices behind gimmicky introductory offers. I’d rather choose them because they’re good, not cheap.
Learn to drive with me and you’ll always know how much each lesson is going to cost from start to finish. You can see my clear and simple pricing by clicking here