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Is Your Driving Instructor a Registered Professional?

ADI BadgeNot many people know but there are many types of driving instructors but only 3 have to be registered with the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (the government). Anyone who wants to be a ‘Potential Driving Instructor’, an ‘Approved Driving Instructor’ or a ‘Fleet Driving Instructor’ must go through a process which includes a DBS check (criminal record check) and whilst teaching on the road they must display there Certificate of Registration in the vehicle.

A Potential Driving Instructor (PDI) or Trainee is exactly what is says it is, a driving instructor who has passed 2 of 3 exams and are training for their last test. A PDI must have undertaken 40 hours of training by a fully qualified driving instructor to obtain their Trainee/Pink licence. The licence lasts for 6 months.

An Approved Driving Instructor (ADi) is someone who taken and passed all 3 parts of the exams but doesn’t end there as all ADi’s are required by the DVSA to undertake periodic testing to ensure their teaching capabilities are of the correct standard. Like the PDi’s and ADi must display their green licence in the vehicle whilst teaching on the road for hire or reward.

A Fleet Driving Instructor or Trainer is registered with the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency but is different than and an ADi as they are more coaches for full driving licence holders than instructors. Fleet trainers offer advice and teach driving techniques on more advanced driving techniques such as Eco driving, which is ways of saving fuel through the way you drive or Defensive driving techniques which can help to save lives, money and time despite others actions and the conditions.

All other types of driving instructors including,

  • HGV/PCV Instructors
  • RoSPA
  • Institute of Advanced Motorist
  • Fork Lift Instructors

do not need to be registered with the government and may not have had criminal record checks.

If a driving instructor does not display their certificate/badge in the vehicle please challenge them and if they cannot produce a certificate/badge get out of the car as they are not a proper driving instructor and have not been criminal record checked. You can report someone who you think could be a bogus driving instructor to the DVSA at

Please be careful and make sure you learn with a registered driving instructor in Portsmouth.