Frequently Asked Questions
These are questions that I get asked on a regular basis that I thought I would share. It can also provide a template to compare other instructors to each other. It may help you to decide if I am the right instructor for you.
This is usually the first question as everyone wants to get good value for money. For your first lesson with me, the cost is £30 for a 2hr lesson. This will allow you to see if you like me or the car. After that it is £30p/h if you pay on the day or £295 for 10hrs, £580 for 20hrs. If you introduce a friend who has more than 2hrs, I will give you a free 1hr to say thank you.
- How many hours will I need?
This is difficult to know before we have met, but the average according to the Driving Standards Agency is about 45hrs with an instructor and around 20 extra from private practice from friends and family. I'm finding that another suggestion I read about seems fairly accurate, double your age and add 10. This gives an estimate of hours. Unfortunately age does seem to make a difference to how quickly someone can learn but if there are positive factors such as cycling on roads for 20 years, this may help reduce the hours needed. After the initial 2hrs I would have a better idea and we can put together a time scale plan of when you might need to pass by.
I work Monday to Friday 10am - 7.30pm. This ensures I avoid the morning rush hour and I am on time for your lesson. I work into the evening for people who have full time jobs or need the other half home from work to look after their children. You can email or call outside these times as I'm easier to reach and always happy to help.
I start and finish all my lessons in a 20 minute drive area from Cambridge city centre. The lessons can range over a huge distance depending on your skill level. It could be local around the city or villages like Cherry Hinton, Histon, Cottenham or further afield to Saffron Walden and Stevenage. We can travel pretty far in two hours and this will increase in June 2018 when Learners can go on motorways with instructors. Learning how to do the airport run to Stansted Airport will be a nice quick trip down the M11. A trip many families in our area do.
I have a 2016 Seat Ibiza. It is a manual petrol. It fits nearly every height and body shape. My shortest student so far is 4'10" and the seat can still go closer for anyone smaller. It is also a joy to drive. Its very smooth with easy to read control panels. It also has a sat nav and cruise control built in which we can use during lessons to practice skills needed outside of the driving test.
- How long have you been an instructor?
I qualified as a driving instructor in 2005. This is my full time job. I wanted to be an instructor since I was 18 but I was too young then, you must hold a license for a minimum of 4 years before becoming an ADI. I started training when I was 23 and qualified at 24.
This is less common to be asked but a very important question. I am a Grade 6. This the highest grade an instructor can be and only 6% of instructors in the UK are awarded this. We are checked on our instructional ability every 2-4 years. You must be Grade 4 or above to teach. I was Grade 5 from 2009 and was awarded a Grade 6 on 21st February 2013. This means that my teaching standards are very high and I correctly identify and fix all errors a pupil may make with a good attitude and patience. It adds value for money because I will get you to a higher standard quicker and you have a better chance of getting through the test first time. From April '14 the grading system has changing. New grades are introduced. Instructors will either be a Grade A or Grade B. My Grade 6 will be the equivalent of a high A Grade but will stay as a 6 until my next check. This link will bring you to the government advice website about the Standards Check
- What else can you offer that others might not?
I have a unique discount code to get money off learner driver insurance from Collingwood Insurance.
I use an iPad in my driving lessons to enhance the lessons. The apps are animated and make learning easier.
If required I can organise a mock test with another instructor to simulate a test day with a stranger in the passenger seat.
I love my job and feel very privileged being able to help people learn how to drive. I hope my enthusiasm for driving will help others. My lessons are fun and I hope that driving lessons are something that people really look forwards to. I want everyone to learn to drive with a smile on their face and be a good safe driver for life.
- How do you pronounce your name?
My name is Mairead and it rhymes with parade. Im not offended if people cant say it! I called my company The Driving Instructor Lady as it was a bit of a running joke after 3 years I found out most of my students call me Driving Lady and have that saved in their phones.
If you would like more information then you could contact me on the form below or call 07884444845.
I work Monday to Friday 10-12, 12.30-2.30, 3-5, 5.30-7.30
Please provide a general location of where you'd like to meet and which days and time suit you best to help me estimate when I can meet you for lessons
Cost is £30p/h or prepay £295 for 10hrs, £580 for 20 hrs
Only press send ONCE, when the page blinks and refreshes it means your message is on its way. I will get back to you as soon as I can.
I would love to help you learn to drive.