Driving instructor training

Gain the freedom to do what you love

Train to be an AA Driving instructor

Accessible training options with over 110 locations available nationwide

Unrivalled support through our exclusive online learning management system

Get your new career moving on our trainee franchise and earn whilst you learn

Is being a driving instructor a good job?

Set your own working hours

Being your own boss means having the freedom to set your work schedule to suit you. You’re in command of your time.

Great earning potential

The average driving lesson now brings in over £35 an hour . Plus the demand for instructors remains high, with new pupils booking lessons every day.

A job you'll love

As an instructor, you’ll meet new people every day. Gain the satisfaction of helping them learn a skill for life, being the safest drivers they can be.

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What you need to know about driving instructor training

There are three Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) tests you need to pass to qualify as an approved driving instructor (ADI). Both of our driving instructor training course options give a blended approach, preparing you for all three parts. Plus you can get access to a part-qualified instructor (PDI) licence before your final instructional ability test – meaning you’ll be earning before you qualify!

  1. Part 1: Theory and hazard perception

    100 multiple-choice theory questions. Then 30 minutes to watch 14 hazard perception videos, spotting developing hazards as they appear.

  2. Part 2: Driving ability

    An advanced practical driving test, you’ll demonstrate your expert-level driving skills and detailed knowledge of The Highway Code learned during training.

  3. Part 3: Instructional ability

    You give a real 1-hour lesson, testing you on three categories – lesson planning, risk management, and teaching & learning strategies.

Why choose The AA for your training?

    • We can kick-start your career with our trainee instructor franchise, with an uncapped supply of pupils
    • Expert business advice and support from our team, every step of the way
    • Over 110 training hubs nationwide to choose from
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More than your average training course

  • A flexible, easy-to-use online revision platform – where you can also share learning and discuss training with other budding instructors.
  • Our trainee franchise gets you moving while you learn. Get access to our pool of learners and start earning sooner.
  • Our account managers work directly with your trainer, tracking your progress and providing support all along the way.

Discover what it means to be a qualified instructor

How to become a qualified instructor

See what steps you’ll take to getting your ADI badge, from training to receiving your official licence.

Check your eligibility to train as an instructor

Before you can take your first step towards driving instructor training, find out if you’re eligible.

Pros and cons of choosing a career as an instructor

Learn the benefits and disadvantages of being an ADI, and see what the average day-to-day looks like.

Don't just take our word for it, see what our instructors have to say

Earn while you learn with a trainee franchise

You could be earning while training for your part 3 test after just 12 to 18 weeks. Choose The AA and get access to business support and uncapped pupils.

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How much do driving instructors earn?

As the vast majority of ADIs are self-employed, driving instructors' earnings are variable depending on factors such as lesson costs, and how much you want to work.

But let's say you charge £28 an hour - which is roughly the national average - then you'll have a net income of £47,040. Of course, there are overheads to consider, but it's not a bad start. The average lesson price amongst The AA instructors is £35. Find out more about how much driving instructors earn in the UK.

Is being a driving instructor a good career?

Choosing a career as a driving instructor can be liberating - the ability to manage your own diary, choose your working hours and schedule your own time-off. Other benefits are less obvious - you get to meet new people weekly and spend time teaching them the skills they need to pass their driving test. There are also important responsibilities that require your attention, read more about what the average day for an ADI may look like.

Are driving instructors self-employed?

In the main, yes. There are some cases where driving instructors may have permanent positions with a salary, but these are very much the exception, not the rule.

Find out more about what it means to be self-employed, and its implications for your income and time management.

What are the requirements to become a driving instructor?

There are certain eligibility requirements for training as a driving instructor. For instance, you need to be over 21, have held a full licence for at least 3 years, and have no motoring convictions.

But there are certain qualities and skills you need too. For example, there’s a DVSA requirement to be a ‘fit and proper person’. Understand more about the requirements to become a driving instructor.

What does “PDI” and “ADI” mean?

PDI stands for potential driving instructor, although it’s not a commonly used term these days. You’re more likely to hear PDIs referred to as trainee instructors, or part-qualified instructors.

ADI stands for approved driving instructor, which is your official title after you qualify by passing the three ADI exams, and then register as an instructor.

What are the ADI Parts 1, 2 & 3?

The ADI exams are made up of three tests. The ADI Part 1 is a multiple-choice theory and hazard perception test. It’s similar in format to the theory test when learning to drive, but this is much tougher, requiring a more in-depth knowledge of The Highway Code and rules of the road. You can only take Part 2 after passing Part 1.

The ADI Part 2 is a test of driving ability. Again, this has a similar format to the practical driving test, but the standard expected of you is far higher. You need to demonstrate expert-level driving skills. If you pass, you can progress to take Part 3.

The ADI Part 3 is a test of instructional ability. Here you give a supervised lesson to a pupil, and are scored on it accordingly. For this part of the test, you need to supply the car and the pupil. Once you’ve passed, you’ll be able to register as an ADI and start life as a professional instructor.

How long does it take to become a driving instructor?

Training to become a driving instructor is a demanding process, and won’t happen overnight. We advise that you should train for at least 6 months, and the average time it takes to qualify is between 6 and 12 months.

To help relieve the financial burden of being in training over a period of time, it’s possible to earn as a trainee instructor when training for your Part 3 exam. This means you can charge for lessons while also gaining valuable on-road experience.

How much does it cost to become a driving instructor?

We offer two courses: the Premium Option which includes 50 hours of 1-to-1 in-car tuition, and costs £2,499. There’s also a fast-track option with immersive VR training, and this costs £1,499.

There are further costs involved in applying to be an ADI, taking the exams and then registering. When you apply, you need to get a DBS check, which costs £8.22. It costs £81 to sit ADI Part 1, £111 to take ADI Part 2, and £111 to take ADI Part 3. You may also need to factor in the cost of getting to your training location, and to the test centres on exam days. Once you’ve passed, it costs £300 to register as an ADI.

If you continue to work as an ADI, you need to re-register every four years, which costs £300 a time.

Can I work while I am training as a driving instructor?

Many trainees continue to work their full or part-time jobs during training. It’s possible to set your own learning schedule around your current commitments. The only exception is the in-person sessions, where you’ll need to show up at set times.

We conduct sessions at AA training hubs, which operate out of more than 110 locations nationwide. Our aim is to make the hubs as accessible as possible wherever you live. Our target is that – if you live on the British mainland – you should be able to travel to one of our hubs within an hour.

Where can I train to become a driving instructor?

We have over 110 AA training hubs at locations nationwide.

You’ll need to show up at these locations for in-person days. For instance, you’ll need to attend 50 hours’ of in-car 1-to-1 tuition if you choose our Premium Option. We’ll discuss dates and times with you before you commit. Some trainees may need accommodation depending on where they live and their circumstances – however, this’ll be their own expense.

Good to know

Automobile Association Developments Limited is an appointed representative of Automobile Association Insurance Services Limited.
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