New analysis of DVSA data from the last 10 years has suggested that young people are ‘giving up on the idea of learning to drive’.
The analysis, conducted by consumer motoring website HonestJohn.co.uk, claims that the number of 17-year olds taking the practical driving test annually has fallen by more than 100,000 since 2007/08.
It also suggests that the overall number of young people (17-25 years) in the UK learning to drive is down by 20% over the same period.
In terms of location, the Honest John analysis says that East Sussex has seen the largest average drop in young people taking the driving test since 2007/08, with a fall of 61%. Bristol is second with a decrease of 45%, while Cambridgeshire and the Vale of Glamorgan are joint third at 40%.
Worcestershire completes the top five with a decrease of 39% compared to 2007/08.
Looking at reasons behind the decline, Honest John points to costs. As well as ‘sky high insurance costs’ it says, an average learner is required to pay around £1,500 to get their licence (based on DfT figures showing a typical passer requires 47 hours of professional tuition to get their licence).
Honest John also references DVSA figures which show that while the average pass rate for the driving test has increased since 2007/08 (from 44% to 47%), the overall number of tests conducted has fallen significantly (from 1.8m to 1.5m), with young drivers ‘accounting for the majority of the drop’.