Mistakes to Avoid on Your Texas Driving Test
The Texas driving test is the last thing standing between you and the open road. Though it's normal to be nervous, remember that the exam isn't intended to trip you up. If you get plenty of practice behind the wheel and avoid these mistakes, you'll be on the road to getting your license.
Mistake #1: Adopting Unsafe Driving Habits
It's important to get lots of practice before taking your Texas driving test. In fact, you're required to complete seven hours of behind-the-wheel instruction, as well as an additional 30 practice hours, before you can get your license if you're under 18.
Though practice makes you a better driver, not all practice is created equal. Be sure that you're coming to a complete stop at stop sings, driving at or under the speed limit, checking your mirrors and stopping smoothly every time you drive. If you do these things while you're practicing, they'll come second-nature during your Texas driving test.
Keep in mind that some of the motorists you see around you may have developed unsafe driving habits. Completing your in-car instruction through a professional driving school is one way to ensure that you're learning defensive driving skills.
Mistake #2: Ignoring the Texas Driver Handbook
While the Texas driving test measures your skill behind the wheel, your examiner will also want to be sure that you understand the state's traffic laws and road signs.
The Texas Driver Handbook is a great resource that covers everything you need to know about driving in Texas. While you don't need to read the entire document, be sure to brush up on right-of-way laws, traffic signs, passing, turning and parking. These subjects are likely to come up on your Texas driving test.
Mistake #3: Not Knowing What to Expect on the Exam
The Texas driver handbook also includes information about the state's road skills exam. Knowing what to expect can calm your nerves on test day and ensure that you're practicing the right maneuvers.
During the exam, your administrator will grade you on your ability to:
- Control the car
- Observe what's going on around you and act accordingly
- Stay in the correct lane
- Properly use signals
There are also maneuvers you may be asked to perform. These include:
- Parallel parking
- Quick stopping
- Stopping at traffic lights and stop signs
- Abiding right-of-way laws
- Safely approaching intersections and turning
- Straight-line backing
Mistake #4: Forgetting Your Documents
On test day, your attention will likely be focused on your exam. You won't be able to get your license, however, without the proper documents.
To apply for your license, you need to bring:
- Proof of your identity, social security number, lawful presence and Texas residence
- Proof that you completed your driver's education requirements
- Your vehicle's registration and proof of insurance