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What To Expect After Lockdown as a Driving Instructor

As the vaccination process is rolling out across the UK, we are certainly edging closer to the end of lockdown. Today we discuss, what that will look like for ADIs and PDIs in all four nations.

What to expect as a driving instructor after lockdown. Image by Nabeel Syed

The Big Bang

One phrase: pent-up demand.

Similarly to the first lockdown, once restrictions are eased Approved Driving Instructors will start seeing learners reaching out. They will contact you over the phone, email, facebook, GoRoadie and other ways.

To make sure you don't miss out, check-in with your waiting list pupils so you have a clear idea where they are at in their learner journey. You may have a few more available spots than you first thought.

Ensure your reviews and contact details up-to-date on your website, Facebook page and GoRoadie profile. Also if you have changed your car, remember to update that information too. Learners love looking at photos of past pupils and your vehicle so, now is a good time to get these in order.

Action Required:

  • Check-in with your existing pupils
  • Check-in with pupils that are on your waiting list
  • Update your online profiles with your latest contact information, reviews, photos and car

Theory Test Challenges

Now that the DVSA has confirmed that there is not going to be an extension for those with existing Theory Test certificates, you can expect a long wait for your existing pupils.

An exercise to do could be to look at your pupils and their Theory Test status, and then build a timeline of how long you expect them to become test-ready, and work out when they could potentially line up a theory test slot.

It may be worth offering those who still have to sit a theory test but are test ready, go down from a lesson per week, to a lesson every two weeks so that 1) you can build up new business and 2) they feel you're considering their cash flow.

Action Required:

  • Build a timeline of where your pupils are in terms of progress and theory test

Practical test challenges

Similar to above, there are going to be challenges on Practical Tests in the near future. This will present issues with scheduling pupils that are test-ready not only for their practical driving test, but also for their weekly lessons.

Students that are test ready may not want weekly lessons but bi-weekly so they can save some cash. You could keep this in mind when speaking to pupils that are hesitant about scheduling the next few weeks.

Cash Strapped Learners

Due to the increase unemployment in the UK, it's worth keeping in mind that learners could be more cash strapped than previously. The rate of unemployment has increased to 4.2% as of October 2020 and due to further lockdowns we expect to see this to increase again.

This could impact your business in several ways, learners may be less committal than before. The best way to combat this is to request lesson fees upfront via your bank, Monzo, PayPal or even GoRoadie Payments (this is a completely free service).

Action Required:

  • Request lesson fee before driving lesson begins

Bigger demand, inflate prices

Numerous driving instructors have left the industry since COVID-19 shook the world. And this means there is less supply of available ADIs.

On top of this, there was a baby boom in 2003 which means more learners than ever are ready to get on the road. Match this with distrust of public services...

You get the point, there is going to be a backlog of learners for a long time. This puts driving instructors in the... driving seat... sorry.... in terms of prices at least. Now with these sorts of waiting lists you could end up earning £3-£5 more per hour, of course depending on area.

Is that something that you're open to?

Action Required:

  • Evaluate your outgoings
  • Evaluate your 2019 revenue
  • Look at your price next to other instructors in your area