Learning to drive is both exciting and challenging. From passing the written test to buying your first car, here’s all you need to know about starting the journey.

1. Getting your driver’s licence

Just turned 16? Good news – you can now apply for your learner licence. But before you hit the road, there are a few steps you need to take.

Firstly, you’ll need to visit a Department of Transport and Main Roads customer service centre, participating QGAP office, or a licence-issuing police station. This is where you’ll hand over your driver licence application form, show your ID, pay the application fees, and most importantly, complete the written test.

While you shouldn’t be too daunted by the test, you’ll need to study up. So read the government’s booklet, Your keys to driving in Queensland , look at our driver skill videos and checklists, and run through an online practice test as many times as possible.

2. Logging your hours

When it comes to driving, practice really makes perfect. In fact, if you are 24 years old or under, you need to record 100 hours of supervised driving in your official learner logbook before you can even go for the practical test. To keep track of your progress, check out the free Learn2go mobile app.

While your parents will likely do the bulk of your supervising, it’s worth squeezing in some professional lessons too. Driving instructors know the road rules and driving test requirements better than anyone. Plus, the first 10 hours of lessons count as 30 hours in your logbook! Members of the free2go program have access to discounts with driving schools. Plus as a member of the free2go program, you’ll also get access to free L & P-plates.

3. The driving test

Once you’ve logged enough hours, had your Ls for at least 12 months, and your logbook has been approved by Department of Transport and Main Roads, you can book in your practical driving test. On the day, make sure you arrive 10 minutes early and bring all the information you need to complete the test.

So, what can you expect? You’ll be on the road for around 45 minutes. In this time, your examiner will give you tasks to perform during the test. If all goes well, you’ll pass with flying colours and be issued a P1 licence. If you don’t pass, don’t be too hard on yourself. Just make sure you find out where you went wrong and try again after more practice.

4. Buying a car

Thought getting your licence was exciting? Well, there’s nothing like owning your own set of wheels. But to find the right car, you need to think about factors such as:

  • What you can afford
  • New vs. used
  • The type of car you want (and are legally allowed)
  • Ongoing running costs
  • Safety features

If you need a little help, RACQ members get access to our free car brokerage services. Our Motor Vehicle Consultants take the hassle out of buying a car by finding you the best deal and saving you money. If you find the car of your dreams but need to borrow money to buy it, make sure you understand the different types of car loans and the costs you need to budget for .

5. Protecting your car

As a car owner you’re required to have Compulsory Third Party (CTP) Insurance which covers bodily injury to other road users, but it’s also important to add the right level of car insurance (to protect against theft or damage). There are different options to consider based on your car make and model, age, and circumstances, so look at the options and choose the right cover for you.

 

*The Motor Vehicle Consultants are a separate business conducted by PLATINUM NOMINEES PTY. LTD. trading and are not a related party or credit representative of RACQ Bank.

RACQ Insurance Limited ABN 50 009 704 152 underwrites CTP Insurance and issues General Insurance. Conditions, limits and exclusions apply. Please read the PDS before making a purchase decision. Contact us for a copy.