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How to Prepare for Your Idaho Driving Test

Before you can be issued your driver's license, one of the things you will need to do is pass the Idaho driving test. This is one of the final things you will be required to do before getting your unrestricted driver's license. This comes after you have completed the Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) program and other steps.

If you have practiced your driving skills while you had your learner's permit or underage driver's license, there is no reason to worry that you won't pass the driving test. The more practice you can get the less nervous you will be on test day. There are several things you should do before taking the driving test that will ensure the best possible outcome; a passing score and an unrestricted driver's license!

Almost all states require that you make an appointment for your driving test, so make sure that you do that before showing up at the driver's license office. Even if your state doesn't require an appointment, you should still make one. It will save a lot of waiting time. Just make sure that if you can't make your appointment, you call them to let them know so someone else can have that spot.

What to Bring to Your Idaho Driving Test

There are several things you need to bring with you on the day you take your Idaho driving test. Have all of these items in a folder and ready to go so you don't have to search for them last minute or risk losing one of them.

  • The vehicle you will be driving for the test. This vehicle must have current tags and registration.
  • Proof of insurance
  • Learner's permit
  • Proof of completed driving hours

What to Expect When taking the Driving Test

Your Idaho driving test will more than likely consist of two parts. The first one is the basic maneuvering course. This is typically set up in the parking lot where you will be required to accomplish basic driving maneuvers including:

  • Parallel parking
  • Accelerating and braking
  • Checking the mirrors and adjusting if needed
  • Three-point turns
  • Using turn signals correctly

The second part is the evaluation on the road where you and a licensed driving instructor will drive along city roads and highways so you can show your driving safe skills in a hands-on situation. You also may be asked to show knowledge of how certain things work in your vehicle, such as turning on the headlights, switching on the high beams, turning on the windshield wipers, turning the heater on and off, and other tasks. If you are driving a vehicle with a manual transmission, you will also be required to show a working knowledge of where the gears are including reverse and should be able to start, shift, and stop smoothly.

Practicing for the Driving Test

Practicing the required maneuvers with a licensed driver in the vehicle before your driving test is a great way to prepare yourself for the actual test. If possible, practice on the roads that you will be driving on when you take the test. You may not be able to pinpoint the exact roads, but the driving tester will usually keep the drivers fairly close to the DMV office you use to take your test.

When you practice for your Idaho driving test include the following maneuvers:

  • Parking: This includes parallel parking, performing two- and three-point turns, and properly pulling into and out of parking spaces.
  • Stopping: Make sure to always stop completely at stop signs. This is something that trips many new drivers up. Also make sure to check for oncoming traffic, know how to use your emergency brake properly, and maintain the proper distance behind stop lines and crosswalks.
  • Turns: You should know how to properly yield the right of way at any intersections, and how to properly slow down gradually when you will be making a turn.
  • Changing lanes: It is important to know how to use turn signals properly and at the right times. Practice checking your mirrors before you change lanes. You should also learn how to make sure no one is in your blind spot. Other important maneuvers to practice include accelerating at the proper speed when entering a freeway and maintaining the proper speed in whatever area you are driving.
  • Defensive-driving maneuvers: Practice using mirrors before braking, following cars at a safe distance, reacting to potential hazards, and checking signal lights and road signs for safety.

If you practice these maneuvers before your test and give yourself sufficient time to practice you should pass the driving test with flying colors. Remember not to focus on the driving examiner when you take your test. Pretend it is your parent that has been riding around with you for months. Focus on driving and remembering the things that you have learned and you won't have any problem.

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