There are always going to be people who want to learn to drive. Even though we’re supposedly just a few years away from a self-driving car revolution, it’s going to be decades before it’s legal to take to the roads without a license. So, becoming a driving instructor is surely a smart decision that is going to be even more desirable in a decidedly uncertain post-COVID world.
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How to be a driving instructor
But not everyone is going to be a natural fit for the job. It is, after all, one that requires a certain level of calm and patience that might be beyond even the most zen primary school teachers. It is, quite frankly, a job with a multitude of positives and negatives, as with any job. But is it the right job for you?
First of all, you need to be over 21 years of age and fully licensed with the DVSA. Pass rates for the DVSA might seem quite low, as it’s a rather intense 3-part course. But as long as you train diligently you shouldn’t have any problems. It will also cost around £2,500 to take all three parts of the test. As far as salary is concerned, it depends whether you work independently or for a driving school. The typical driving instructor, meanwhile, will earn between £20,000 and £30,000 a year after expenses. You’ll also have to factor in whether you’ll buy your car outright or take out a personal car lease.
Do you have the right attitude and levels of patience to be teaching people how to drive daily? This is a job that demands patience above all else, as you will be forced to put up with people who have no idea what they’re doing. You might even end up with someone behind the wheel who has no business being there and in those situations, keeping a cool and calm head is mandatory. De-cent people skills are also an obvious benefit.
Being a good driving instructor means the same whether you’re working for yourself or a school. It means being able to manage your workload effectively and be your own boss and it means being prepared to put in the hours and dedicate a lot of your free time to your job. It’s also worth being prepared to speculate before you accumulate. Because you may spend more money in the first couple of years getting your business set up, but once you are up and running you should be earning well and have developed something of a reputation in the local community.
The word of mouth
Driving instructors might advertise online, in newspapers and so on and so forth but their bread and butter is always going to be referrals. The majority of custom for driving instructors is gained from word of mouth so always be polite, always treat your students with respect and never be too shy to ask for a TripAdvisor review!