Tempted by the TV adverts from Red Driving School / The Instructor College?
Many people are attracted to become a Driving Instructor by promises of a high income, flexible hours and a comfortable way of life. Whilst there are many benefits in becoming a Driving Instructor, there are pitfalls! Of those who start out to become an Instructor probably only one in ten make it as far as passing the Third and Final Exam! Others fail the exams, find it too hard, change their minds or other factors have intervened. Despite apparent claims of some training organisations no one is guaranteed to pass. Although most Instructors are busy at the moment, there are no guarantees that this will always be the case. In the 90's many good Instructors went out of business because there simply wasn't enough work to go round.
What about the potential earnings?
Well you need to remember that most Instructors, even working for big Driving Schools like BSM or the AA, are self-employed and have to pay a franchise fee. Then you need to budget in that you will get no holiday pay, sick pay or pension scheme. You will need to make provision for these out of your earnings. Also check on whether the potential earnings are for the number of hours worked or number of lessons. If it is for say 40 one-hour lessons, you need to add in approximately 10 minutes travelling time between lessons ie another 6½ hours and then time for admin, book-keeping, phone calls, car maintenance etc. 40 lessons can easily add up to 50 hours of actual work time per week.
How do you get trained?
There are many training providers around. Don't just go to the one offering the highest potential earnings or the biggest adverts but look carefully at their training packages. What is the total cost. What support do you get? Is there a cap on the number of hours available for Part 3 training? Can you speak to people who've been through their training programme? Don't be afraid to ask questions and get the whole story!
Remember a "guaranteed job", promised by some of the bigger organisations such as The Instructor College doesn't mean a guaranteed number of lessons. Many Instructors would recommend some of the smaller more local training organisations.
The DSA runs a register of approved Instructor Trainers called ORDIT. Click for more information about ORDIT.
Find out about Franchises.
We also have Guidelines to how much can an Instructor earn.
DRIVING INSTRUCTOR TRAINING