When learning a new skill as like driving, you’re bound to make a few mistakes.

As you get used to being on the road, you can anticipate situations before they happen, and learn how to avoid making mistakes in the first place.

Read on and learn about some of the most common mistakes that new drivers make, and what you can do to avoid making them yourself.


You May Get Easily Distracted as a New Driver

If you are a confident new driver, then you may not feel that you have to pay as much attention to the road as you actually do.

Remember, no matter how great you are at driving, the situation can change at any time, so you must always stay vigilant.

Another driver could pull out in front of you at a junction if you aren’t focused, which could lead to an accident if you aren’t prepared to act.


You May Not Be Aware of Your Surroundings

Whilst practicing in a controlled environment like a car park is essential, this may not prepare you for the distractions and situations that can arise when you start driving on the road.

From wandering pedestrians to reckless drivers, the actions of those around you can have an impact on traffic and cause you to rethink your next move.

An image of a man looking back through his rear view mirror.

Make sure that you maintain an awareness of the road around you by checking your mirrors regularly. 


New Drivers Often Drive Too Quickly or Slowly

If you feel you have mastered driving already, then you may think it is fine to go above the speed limit – but this is incredibly dangerous.

Not to mention that you could lose your licence if you collect 6 points in your first 2 years on the road.

On the other hand, a cautious driver may be tempted to drive slowly, which can pose other dangers or even cause an accident, for instance when driving on a motorway.


You Might Get Annoyed at Other Drivers

Unfortunately, regardless of how well you learn to drive, you will always have the driving style of other people to contend with.

Whether people tailgate or cut in front of you, it can be easy to get stressed out or upset at the actions of other drivers.


New Drivers Sometimes Forget Certain Checks and Adjustments

Your vehicle must be roadworthy and safe to drive, which is why it is so important that new drivers remember to check things like tyre pressure and oil levels regularly.

You should also make sure that your mirrors and seats are adjusted correctly every time you drive.


New Drivers Can Sometimes Struggle with Parking

No one is ever enthusiastic about parallel parking, for instance, but mastering certain parking manoeuvres can really come in handy and help to reduce the likelihood of an accident occurring.

With time, focus and practice, you can master a range of manoeuvres that will stand you in good stead if you find yourself driving in a busier, more unpredictable environment.

An image of two cars in a car park photographed from above.

Take some time to get used to a range of manoeuvres, including parallel parking. 


New Drivers Sometimes Put Too Much Faith in Other Drivers

Just because you know the Highway Code, that doesn’t mean that every other driver will have the same knowledge.

For instance, a new driver could understandably assume that the driver in front at a roundabout entrance will take an upcoming gap in traffic, causing you to crash into them if they hesitate.

You should drive as though another driver could surprise you at any moment, so that you can prepare for any situation that could arise.


You Might Neglect to Maintain Your Car

With all this new knowledge to contend with, you could easily forget to invest in car servicing and maintenance when necessary.

Simple routine checks of parts like your car’s tyres and regular oil top-ups can help you keep your car functioning safely on the road.

Don’t forget to clean your car before the dirt and dust builds up too.


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How Can New Drivers Avoid Making These Mistakes?

To avoid making these mistakes for yourself, you should make sure that you respond to texts before setting off on your journey and put your phone on silent. That way you won’t be tempted to check your phone whilst driving.

You may even want to press play on a driving playlist you’ve made ahead of time – that way you won’t be distracted changing radio channels as you drive.

Take some time to practice moves like reverse parking and three-point turns in quiet areas when you can – additional practice is never a bad idea!

When driving on the roads, take a moment to breathe and focus before making your next move – and try not to pick up the bad habits of those around you. Just because your friend forgets to wear a seat belt or keep both hands on the wheel, it doesn’t mean that you should do the same!

To make it easier to remember, why not put a note on your dashboard to remind you to adjust your seat and mirrors every time you set off?

Keep an eye on your speed and adjust it according to the situation so that you can keep up with the flow of traffic. You will likely need to drop your speed in snowy, icy or rainy conditions, for example.

Try to take a breath and let the foolish actions of other drivers go – honking your horn repeatedly and shouting likely won’t help the situation.

Whilst driving can be a lot of fun, remaining aware of the world around you is essential – flying debris and other obstacles can appear seemingly out of nowhere and catch you off guard if you aren’t careful.

That’s why it’s so important that you check every single around your car before setting off, even if you think a quick look in the door mirror will be enough.

We would also suggest that you get the hang of driving before you take your friends for a drive – it can be harder to focus with the background noise, especially if they’re especially excitable or enthusiastic.

Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs – there are plenty of non-alcoholic drinks out there to choose from – and make sure you get a good night’s sleep before setting off on a long journey.

Lastly, be sure to book a car service at least once a year so that you can drive with confidence in your vehicle’s health.


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We hope that you have enjoyed learning about the most common mistakes made by new drivers.