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Think the K53 is tough? Check out the world's hardest driving licence tests

China requires you to memorise 1,000 answers, and in Montenegro you have to undergo a psychiatric test to identify potential road rage

A survey analysing driving licence testing procedures around the world came up with some interesting results.
A survey analysing driving licence testing procedures around the world came up with some interesting results.
Image: Supplied

To pass their driving licence test in India, learners only have to drive in a straight line, turn left and stop after 50 metres.

While students of SA’s tricky K53 driving test may be envious of India’s easy passage to driving freedom, at least we don’t have it as tough as in parts of Australia, where learners have to log 120 hours of experience with an instructor before they can take their final practical test, or have to be examined by a psychiatrist before applying for a licence in Montenegro.

A recent survey undertaken by car finance company Zuto analysed more than 190 countries to compare driving licence testing procedures around the world, and lists the countries with the easiest and most difficult tests to pass.

Most difficult tests to pass

In Japan, learners are expected to attend a mandatory driving camp for 26 hours. Requirements also involve taking a theory exam, five days of driving practice, and finally a practical exam.

In China. the theory test contains 100 questions and requires you to memorise 1,000 in total. There are then two separate practical assessments, followed by a final theory test.

Croatia's new drivers must attend 70 to 100 hours of mandatory driving school before attempting their test. Your personality type and fitness to drive is also assessed.

In Montenegro, learners on their practical test are only allowed to make three errors before failing. Before getting a licence, you must also be examined by an ophthalmologist and a psychiatrist.

Learners taking their practical test in Ukraine are only allowed to make two mistakes before getting an instant fail.

In Singapore you must pass two intense theory tests before you can apply for your practical test. Each test contains 50 questions and takes 50 minutes to complete.

French earner drivers have to clock up 3,000km behind the wheel with an instructor before they can book their practical test.

For Russians, the theory test only allows for one mistake out of 20 multiple choice questions. There are also two separate practical tests; an obstacle driving course and on-road exam.

Vietnam's theory test is a staggering 450 questions long.

Nicaraguans must complete an eight-page psychology test to identify any potential road rage before getting a learner’s licence.

Easiest tests to pass

The practical test in the Philippines involves doing one loop of a preset driving course that only involves right turns.

For Ugandans, the theory test is 30 questions long, but you only need to get 25% correct to pass.

In some Mexican states, you only have to pass a theory exam to get a licence. Before 2018 you didn't have to take any test to obtain a licence.

In Colombia, t he practical driving test is scored out of 10, and you only need to get five points to pass.

Drivers in South Sudan don't always have to take a practical test if they can prove they’re "fit to drive"’.

In Burundi, many people drive without legal licences, and those who do have one don’t have to take any prior training or lessons.

Indonesians only need to answers 21 questions out of 30 correctly to pass the theory test, and the practical test involves simple tasks like driving forwards, reversing and driving up and downhill.

Until recently, Egyptian drivers only had to drive forwards and backwards six metres to pass their test. However, this has since been toughened up with the addition of a 10-question theory test.

Historically, in Honduras you never had to pass an exam to obtain a driving license. More recently Honduras has brought in a simple written test, but no practical exam.

Unusual facts

In Kenya, driving tests feature a toy car and table-top board which learners must navigate around to demonstrate road policy awareness.

In Kazakhstan, practical tests are moderated by on-board computers which monitor the driver's performance. This means there is no examiner in the car with you.

Due to the uneven road surfaces in Lesotho, many learners take their test in 4x4 vehicles.

For Libyans taking their practical test, it’s a tight squeeze in the car. You'll be joined by a police officer, driving instructor and other learner drivers taking their exam after you.

Theory test applicants in Romania will be photographed three times during the test to use as evidence that they actually took the exam.

Chinese learner drivers must complete a practical test on an obstacle course. However, there will be no examiner in the car. Instead, you will be assessed by cameras and sensors.

In Slovenia, with eco-friendly vehicles becoming increasingly popular, you’ll be tested on the basic techniques of energy-saving and environmentally friendly driving in your practical exam.

* See the full Zuto study here


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