I have been driving since 2004. I was about 14 years old when my dad started teaching me how to drive the car. The decision came after my dad had to drive 1000km+ to the other country all by himself over the long drive to Sabah, Malaysia from Tutong, Brunei Darussalam. That tiring one week journey, plus the fact that being the father of three daughters, he probably wanted us to be independent unlike most girls from our country, Pakistan, who have to depend on their fathers or brothers to take them places. I think it was the best decision my dad ever made! =)
Was being 14 too young? Oh, don’t worry. I never drove alone. Driving on the road was only and always under supervision. Without my dad’s supervision we could only drive(read ride) one thing — the bicycle!
After coming to Pakistan in 2005, I wondered why my dad never bothered to get his driving license here. We were law abiding citizens (except the fact he taught us to drive quite early 😉 ) and the thought bothered me, until I felt that apparently, getting a driving license was like waiting for a free hot meal at a charity in a very long queue on a freezing winter day. Sounds quite uncomfortable, doesn’t it? That’s the reason why I hesitated getting my license too when I became 18.
Finally, God took mercy on us and the City Traffic Police Lahore did wonders and came up with a new Driving license issuing plan – something that no longer takes so much time. The process has been simplified A LOT now.
Okay, let’s keep thing short, even if they are not already, haha, and let’s see how to actually get the Driving License.
Getting The Learner’s License/ Permit
Permanent Driving License
There are basically two processes you have to go through in order to get your Driving License in Lahore:
1 – Get a Learner’s Permit (aka Learner’s License), and
2 – Get the Driving License.
GETTING YOUR LEARNER’S PERMIT
- Go to the CTPL early, by 8AM, if possible.
- Buy an Rs60 ticket from a post office or the Ticket office at the Licensing Centre.
- Get in line and wait for your turn. (Ladies first ruled applied to me here)
- Have your NIC ready(original and a photocopy) for Data Entry.
- Move to next seat/ cabin and they’ll take your picture
- Learner’s Permit ready.
- Application Form (A) within File Cover
- Original Learner Permit of at least 6 weeks.
- Medical Certificate
- 3 Passport size fresh Photo Graphs(Attested)
- An Attested Copy of N.I.C.
- Paste a Ticket of Mentioned Fee on License Document.”
Things to do at home before the day you go for the driving test:
Fill the forms available in the file. Get the medical signed by a doc.
Get 2 NICs and 3 passport photos attested. They only took 2 of mine though.
GETTING YOUR DRIVING LICENSE
- On the day you go to get the Driving Test, bring the documents mentioned above: the attested docs, Original Learners Permit and the filled file.
- Buy the tickets that are supposed to be pasted on the forms. (Rs900 tickets for Motor Car license or Rs950 for both Motor Car + Bike license)
- Go inside the building. In the first room you’re supposed to go to, you will use purple ink to sign your attendance with a thumb imprint and get your turn number.
- At first, oral test will be taken, asking you about the least common signs you’ve ever seen on the road. They will sign whether you passed or failed in the file.
- After that you’ll get to take the driving test by going outside. Again, Pass or Fail, will be signed.
- Pay Rs50 for the TCS to have your Driving License delivered at your doorstep. You have to write your address on the envelope yourself, so bring a pen.
- Then you have to go submit the whole stuff, file and all.
- I got my learners at Arfa Software Technology Park on a Saturday but took my Driving test at Thokar Niaz Baig on a Friday.
- Buy tickets in advance, if possible. When we went to take the Driving Test, the ticket guy came late. For without the tickets, there will be no Driving Test. In fact we were about to go back being told the ticket guy wasn’t going to come when his replacement came and the kind guard at the Gate told us to go give the test since the tickets are available now.
- I got my Medical signed although one Police Officer I met at Jinnah Hospital said you would only need your Medical Form if you’re above 50 years of age.
- I went on Friday, a women-only day apparently, but there were guys too. Lucky for them – the test was lenient. Just a single U-turn, hardly 10 meters.
- If you want to quickly go and get the work done, Thokar Niaz Baig is the best option. If you have the tickets and go there by 9am, you can easily get free by 10am!
- With such a purpose-built Driving Test rea, I really wish they took the whole driving test not just the U-turn. How could I show off my 10 year experience in a single U-turn where the steering wheel slipped while turning because it was too sweaty? ='( That is SO awfully UNFAIR! No wonder 80% women don’t know how to drive — how many of you know you have to ALWAYS GIVE WAY to the traffic coming from the right?
- I received my Driving License on Tuesday, 4 days after the Driving Test. That being so fast made me like the government an inch =)