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Learning to drive automatic v manual?

big bear

A bear on a mission!
S: 14st7lb
One of my 'things to do' in 2011 is to finally learn to drive. I've had lessons 5 years ago in manual but lack of money didn't continue. I now need to learn as want to do it quickly & cheaply as possible.

I thought that if I learn to drive in an automatic car I can pass my test quickly as its easier or am I wrong?Opinions please.

I could then at a later time do my manual test or should I just do my manual now?

Has anyone just learned automatic driving?
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How many lessons did you have before? As if you'd already mastered the gears, then it seems unnecessary to now switch to an automatic.

Also bear in mind that lessons for automatics are more expensive, and if you pass the automatic test you're limited to automatic cars.


rainbows holiday buddy :)
I would learn in a manual. Then once you pass you can drive auto or manual cars whereas if you learn in an auto then you're stuck with autos and it's an added expense to take another test for manual.

Its surprising how quickly you pick it all up.

big bear

A bear on a mission!
S: 14st7lb
I did about 10 lessons 5 years ago. I think I'll just book a block of 10 then see what the instructor says.

There are so many instructors in our local paper I don't know which to chose....any tips?? I've tried my friends for recommendations but none of them can help. X
I would suggest booking with an actual driving school rather than an individual instructor, as if the instructor turns out to be awful, or if they have a teaching style that doesn't fit with you, at least you can just ask the driving school for a different one.


Gold Member
S: 10st4lb C: 10st4lb G: 9st7lb BMI: 27.2 Loss: 0st0lb(0%)
And watch the film 'Happy Go Lucky' before you start the lessons too!!


Mad old Bat with Attitude
S: 14st5lb
Good on you! Learning to drive will change your life! I didn't learn till I was 38 (dad put me off it at 17 :eek:)
I must admit I would go for the manual if you don't feel freaked by the gears. I wouldn't like to drive an automatic, but my DIL just couldn't get to grip with the gears, ( I think it was the instructor who used to shout at her, now she has a woman and she's fine) so she changed to an automatic and she's had no problems.
S: 16st5lb C: 14st9lb G: 11st9lb BMI: 33.1 Loss: 1st10lb(10.48%)
Definitely go for the manual option if you can. A friend of mine took her test in an automatic several years ago to try and speed up the process as she was moving to the other side of the country and didn't want to have to entirely rely on trains to get home once in a while. She now really regrets it because she never got around to taking her manual test (because once you can drive you won't want to do more lessons - how many people actually do motorway lessons after they have passed?) and when she had a car accident a year ago the insurance company wouldn't provide her with a curtesey car because automatic hire cars are more difficult to find and far more expensive. She has found it very limitting but would now have to retake her theory test and have lessons in a manual as well as un-learn all the bad behaviours us drivers pick up almost immediately after passing the test so hasn't done it.

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