We get asked quite frequently about intense courses, otherwise known as crash courses.
They seem to be quite a popular way to go, enabling you to obtain a licence in a short space of time, usually within a week. But what do we really know about these courses compared to the conventional learn to drive method…
Did you know that 88% of people end up passing after an intensive course, compared to 47% of people doing so in the traditional way? Let’s look at some courses in more detail:
|Intense Course||Traditional lessons|
|Multiple lessons a day||Usually one lesson a week|
|Pass in a week||Average learning time is 3 months (with WrightStart)|
|Average cost £1000||Average cost £870 (with WrightStart)|
So, that’s how they’re different – but if you still like the sound of intensive courses, what are their pros and cons?
Quick access to licence
This is one of the biggest factors behind people taking intensive courses over traditional ones. If you’re 18 and are just learning to drive in order to increase your independence, the speed of the course might not be an issue. However, if you’re learning to drive specifically for a new job or new house, for example, then getting your license quickly could make all the difference. People in these situations might find that intensive courses suit their needs better.
We all have busy lives – and combining that with the usual single session a week, it can be easy to forget things from one session to the next. On the surface at least, intensive driving courses can seem like a solution to this issue – allowing you to practice every day if necessary. Even if you don’t go that intense, doing your driving lessons over a shorter period can lead to you retaining more information each time, which could put you in good stead for the practical test at the end of it all.
Though none of us like to admit it, driving lessons are expensive. Taking an intensive course can be an festive way of bypassing this. With the fewer amount of lessons required to reach your end goal, you might end up paying a lesser amount than if you were to book all these lessons separately. On top of this, some driving schools have discounts of their own especially for intensive courses, which can lower the cost even further.
Doesn’t drag on for months
When you see friends and family behind the wheel, it can make you yearn for the open road yourself. If you take a traditional driving course, it can be a good few months before you even entertain the thought of your theory test. Not so with intensive courses.
Historically, the only option available was one extended session each day, for a week. However, some schools offer even shorter sessions – such as a two-day course with only ten hours of training. If you want to go for this option, though, make sure it’s the right one for you – as these more condensed sessions are sometimes better suited to those who only need a slight refresher ahead of a test.
The clue’s in the name here – they’re not called intensive driving courses for no reason! Driving every day of the week may suit some people better than others – and if you’re not used to being in a car for that amount of time, this can have the danger of overwhelming you.
This point naturally follows on from the last – when you’ve only got a week between the beginning of your lessons and your driving test, there will naturally be a pressure on you to make the most amount of progress in the shortest time possible. This obviously doesn’t bode well if you’re a novice driver who might be prone to making mistakes – the more time spent correcting these errors, the less time theoretically spent preparing for the test. The feeling of there being no room for errors further increases this pressure, and can mean you take in less in the long run.
Short amount of time to learn and process information
Speaking of being overwhelmed, another possible drawback of intensive courses over their traditional counterparts is that you don’t have as much time to process all that information. As much as some people may be able to keep up with the pace of daily lessons, those who take a little more time to learn could find themselves out of their depth. New stuff will be coming at you every day, and if you can’t keep up you may set yourself up for bad results from the start. Furthermore, if you don’t pass with flying colours on test day, you might end up feeling as if you’ve wasted your time.
Doesn’t allow for private practice and consolidation
Though some people get by just fine with only the weekly lessons, others feel the need to keep their knowledge topped up in-between with private practice, perhaps in their mum or dad’s car. Unfortunately, the sheer density of lessons on an intensive driving course makes such outside practice nearly impossible, with the time that you would have left over taken up by extended lessons with your instructor. Not only can this mean that you’re unable to really solidify what you’ve learnt, but arguably private practice gives you a bigger pool of places to drive around. This is more likely to involve different weather conditions and road types – something which you likely won’t get with an intensive course.
Now you’ve seen our facts and advice, what do you think?