When will the driving test backlog be eliminated in the UK?

The Covid pandemic has caused a huge range of issues for people in the UK, one of them being the impact on driving instructors and learners.

This has resulted in a huge backlog of people trying to book lessons first and then trying to book a practice test.

Learners found it difficult to book tests, spent more money and some even had to travel far to get a test.

The question might linger in many people’s minds as to when this demand will return to normal levels.

Following numerous freedom of information requests to the DVSA and data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), a new report from Learner Driver Insurers, Marmalade showed the full extent of the backlog and how it is expected to worsen in the coming months.

The backlog for learner drivers has been huge (PA)

When will the UK driving test backlog end?

Marmalade made an FOI request in January 2022 which revealed gross demand for driving tests over the whole of 2021.

Using the data, Marmalade established an average gross monthly demand for driving tests in 2022.

They calculated that the backlog will only be cleared by January 2024 at the current rate.

Around three million learner drivers will fight for trial slots over the next 20 months, with a peak expected in May this year.

Although the backlog will slowly begin to clear up from June, there will still be over 250,000 learners waiting to book their test in early 2023 – a stark reminder of the depth of this problem.

In fact, it won’t be until August next year that the backlog will drop below 100,000 people.

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