Once you have passed Part 1 & 2 of the ADI qualification process and you have completed 40 hours of Part 3 Training, you can apply for a trainee licence to help you gain experience instructing pupils to drive. Many organisations will state "you will not need a Trainee Licence as it does not help you pass the test". This is, in part true, as most Potential Driving Instructors (PDIs) have received poor training, have carried out the training in too a short period of time and are not under supervision whilst under a trainee licence. At DTC we recommend a Trainee Licence as we believe that our training is comprehensive enough for you to actually do the job. Additionally, whilst you are on your trainee licence, we will ensure you continue weekly training in order for you to continually develop your instructional ability.

A trainee licence allows you to be legally paid for giving driving instruction. It is issued only for you to gain practical experience in preparation for the Part 3 instructional ability test and is useful for those in the final stages of training for a part three examination. The trainee licence lasts for six months and normally only one is granted in the two year qualifying period.

Applying for a Trainee Licence

If you apply for a trainee licence you must:

  • hold and have held a full UK or European (EU or EEA) car driving licence for at least three years, up to the date of application.
    not have been disqualified from driving at any time in the four years up to the date of application
    be a fit and proper person
    have passed the theory part (Part 1) and the practical test of driving ability (Part 2)
    be eligible to take the test of ability to instruct
    not have passed the theory test more than two years before the date of your application
  • Process your application online at Driving Instructor online services

You will also need to complete and submit form ADI 3L (MD) to accompany your online transaction.

ADI 3L (MD) form and guidance notes

The application form for trainee licences can also be obtained from the examiner who passed you on your driving ability test or you can use the link below to download a copy.

ADI 3L form and guidance notes

Displaying the Licence

When instruction is being given the licence must be displayed in the bottom left hand corner of the front windscreen. The use of the licence is your own responsibility.  If you cannot make full use of your licence and you have to stop giving tuition, return it to the issuing office immediately. If your trainee licence is lost or stolen you should report it to the police and to DSA straight away. No refunds will be given for any period when the licence is not used.