What to expect in your trailer test…

So you’ve decided it’s time to take your trailer test? As drivers, we must all be aware of what other road users are doing, but with a caravan in tow you have two vehicles to think about so it is important you feel totally confident in what you are doing. Here is an example of what to expect in your test so you can prepare yourself.

The course comprises several elements, to ensure that you can tow safely in all conditions:

  • An eyesight test to check that you can read a licence plate from 20m (or 20.5m if it is an old-style number plate).
  • Reversing manoeuvre. You will line up with two cones in front of the car, before reversing around a cone and back into a bay with a barrier at the back. You are allowed two ‘shunt’ manoeuvres to pull forward and correct the positioning of the trailer, and are allowed out of the car to judge surroundings once at the start of your manoeuvre and once during the bay reverse.
  • Show-and-tell questions. These often come first, as you approach the car to begin the test, and the questions are about road and vehicle safety. Most are common sense.
  • Hitch and unhitch manoeuvre. You’ll be asked to pull up in a separate section of the testing ground, where you will unhitch the trailer, park the car beside it, check that it is safe for the road then hitch it up again.
  • General driving ability. The bulk of your time will be spent towing under the direction of the examiner around towns and villages. This can also take you onto motorways and dual carriageways, so make sure that you know your legal speed limits while towing.
  • The independent drive. In this 10-minute section the examiner won’t give directions and you have to follow signs for a particular destination.

If you are taking your test anytime soon then here at Coast we wish you the best of luck!