What it is

What the driving test involves and what you need in order to sit the test.

The driving test

Driver testing in Ireland is carried out directly by the Road Safety Authority to a standard that complies with the EU Directive on Driving Licences.


From 1st February 2011 the driving test fees are:

Category  Fee
A, A2, A1, B, BE, AM,W €85
All other categories €120
CPC Driving Test (Bus and Truck Category)


(Driving Test Part 1- €120
Part 2- €32)

You can  apply and pay for your driving test online. You will need a credit card to do this (Visa or Mastercard) or a debit card (Laser) plus a valid e-mail address.

Alternatively, you can download a driving test application form here, or obtain a copy from any NDLS office (National Driving Licence Service) or Library. Payment should be made by cheque or postal money order. These should be crossed and made payable to the Road Safety Authority. The correct fee must accompany your completed application form. Fees are  non-transferable.

If, after making a driving test application, you do not wish to proceed with the application, you may apply within 14 days of payment for a refund of your test fee (provided you are not scheduled for an appointment within that time).

What must I do?

To do the test, you must hold a valid learner permit for at least six months on the day of the test for cars, motorcycles and works vehicles(in the case of a first time learner permit holders, the code 991 will be printed under the restrictions/information section on your learner permit opposite the vehicle category) . You must provide a suitable vehicle to sit your driving test.  Mandatory lessons may apply to you, see information on Initial Basic Training(IBT) for Motorcycles and Esssential Driver Training(EDT) for car drivers. 

Preparing for your driving test


  • Study the Rules of the Road booklet
  • Study the Preparing for your test booklet  
  • Use the services of an approved driving instructor (ADI)
  • Practice driving on all types of road (except motorways) and in all types of traffic situations, accompanied by your ADI or sponsor. This should include driving at night.
  • Study the “Learning to Drive” suite of manuals for car, bike, bus and truck, available at book shops nationwide.
  • There are also a suite of learning to drive videos available here


  • Unnecessarily obstruct traffic or annoy other road users
  • Drive unaccompanied at any time.

Your appointment

Appointments for driving tests are organised usually 2 - 3 weeks in advance of your test date. You will be issued with an appointment email or a letter. This will indicate the time, date and venue for the test together with a checklist for your driving test. Please read your appointment notice and the checklist carefully.  

If you apply online, you may be able to schedule your own test appointment if there are slots available. 

Testing is conducted out of many test centres throughout the country. Where possible, your test will be arranged for the centre you nominate on your application form.

You can apply for your driving test to be conducted through Irish (just complete the Irish language version of the application form and submit as normal).

Taking the test

While you may be daunted at the thoughts of undergoing a driving test, preparation in advance with an approved driving instructor (ADI) will help maximise your chances of passing your test.

To pass the driving test you will need to:

  • Maintain proper control over the vehicle at all times
  • Show anticipation and awareness
  • Take proper precautions when moving off, stopping, overtaking, changing direction and meeting other traffic
  • Make safe and reasonable progress when driving and when meeting and crossing the path of other vehicles

Day of the test

You should be present in the waiting area of the test centre before the appointed time of your test. If you are late, the test cannot be conducted and your fee will be forfeit.

The driver tester will check your learner permit to establish that it is:

  • Yours and not someone else’s
  • Current
  • For the correct category of vehicle.

If you are sitting a motorcycle test, you will need to bring your Vehicle Registration Certificate which confirms details regarding the motorcycle you present to test with (i.e. power output in KW, engine cc, power to weight ratio, make, model, and registration number).  If your motorcycle is restricted in power, you will need to bring the certificate which provides proof of compliance of restriction. This must be a certificate  on headed paper from an official source.

If you are sitting a test in category C, you will need to bring the vehicle certificate of roadworthiness for the vehicle you present with for the test. You  need to ensure your vehicle meets the minimum “real total mass” requirements set out in your appointment letter.  Visit the Real Total Mass section of our website  to ensure you are prepared  for the vehicle category you are sitting your test in.

If you are sitting a test in category CE, you need to bring with you to the test a weight declaration form completed from a weigh bridge to verify the weight of the combination, to present to the driver tester on the day of the driving test.  This weight declaration must show the following details:

  1. Registration number of the tractor unit/drawing vehicle
  2.  The Trailer mark (Registration number of the trailer)
  3. The weigh bridge docket must be dated and has a validity period of 12 months from date of issue.
  4. The unladen weight of the combination. 

You will be asked to read and sign a statement confirming that:

  • The vehicle insurance cover is in place and adequate
  •  Your vehicle is in a roadworthy condition.

You can download the Checklist for your Driving Test(PDF) for more information)  on all the above requirements.

What if I cannot make it to the test centre due to bad weather or road conditions

In most cases tests will be cancelled and this information will be posted on our website, as soon as updates become available.  Click here for updates.  In circumstances where it is deemed unsafe to conduct driving tests in a number of test centres, we will immediately issue a text/email to all affected customers although we appreciate that in some cases it may be too late to prevent an unnecessary journey.

In some cases there may be localised dangerous road conditions caused by ice, frost, snow, floods etc.; in such cases the advice is always the same - do not travel if you feel it is unsafe to do so.  In such circumstances please advise us that you are cancelling your test via the test cancellation webform . Your test will be cancelled and another test arranged for you free of charge.

The test

The driving test for cars takes approximately 30 - 40 minutes and includes:

  • Questions on the Rules of the Road (including identifying road signs)
  • Demonstrating hand signals
  • Reversing round a corner
  • Turnabout manoeuvre
  • A hill start
  • Driving approximately five miles in a variety of road and traffic conditions

Your driving will be assessed in the following situations:

  • Moving off
  • Driving in traffic
  • Stopping - Reversing around a corner
  • Turning about, to face in the opposite direction
  • Starting on a hill

Aspects of your driving assessed will include:

  • Road positioning
  • Overtaking and passing
  • Anticipation and observation
  • Use of mirrors and signals
  • Progress Speed
  • Compliance with traffic lights, road signs and markings
  • Use of the vehicle controls (accelerator, clutch, gears, brakes and steering)
  • Use of secondary controls such as wipers, de-misters, etc