How Do I Drive Forwards Into a Parking Bay?

How do I drive forwards into a parking bay?

Why Choose This Manoeuvre?

For how common this manoeuvre is, driving forwards into a parking bay has its downsides. Some you might want to consider include:

  • When reversing into the parking space, you might have better visibility over the bay lines
  • It is more challenging to fit into a tight space when driving forward into the bay
  • The visibility can be much worse when reversing out of the bay
  • If reversing into a bay, you can use the lines of the bay in front of you as a reference.

Performing This Manoeuvre on Your Test

While this manoeuvre implies some noticeable disadvantages, this is one of the most common manoeuvres used by all drivers. Indeed, some advantages of it are that it is much quicker to perform than reversing into the bay, and, in good visibility conditions, reversing out of the bay is also a safe option. Due to its popularity, it has been implemented in the new driving test that became official in December 2017.

Driving Forwards Into a Parking Bay: Step-by-Step

Here is a breakdown of the steps to take to perform this type of parking manoeuvre. Don’t forget that the assistance and guidance of an expert instructor are irreplaceable to learn such challenging procedures.

Step 1: Selecting Your Parking Bay

If you are performing this manoeuvre in your driving test, your DVSA examiner will not indicate to you the target parking bay. Rather, you will have to choose one for yourself. When you are prompt, check your mirrors and release the gas pedal to slow down. This will give you the time to identify the right bay. For this, use the tips below:

  • If possible, pick a bay that has no cars parked on the sides. This will limit the chances of damage and allows you to perform the manoeuvre with less pressure.
  • You can cross the white lines of the bay slightly when moving into it. However, it is recommendable to pick a bay on the right side so you won’t need to drive onto the other side of the road to complete your parking. 

Step 2: Approaching Your Parking Bay

Once you have picked your bay and slowed down, you will need to implement your LADA (Look, Assess, Decide then Act) routine. Once you are in a safe spot, and you have identified potential obstacles, it is time to drive forward into the bay. 

When doing so, remember that the vehicle driving on the other lane assumes priority. So, you might need to stop to let others go before the lane is free and you can complete the manoeuvre. 

Step 3: Use the MSPSL System

When approaching your bay, it is crucial to implement the MSPSL (Mirrors, Signal, Position, Speed, Look) routine. For this, you should:

  • Recheck your mirrors, including your doors’ ones and you interior one
  • Put on a signal if someone is behind or in front of you to let them know of your upcoming change of directions.
  • If your target bay is on the right, position yourself as much as possible on the left. This will make your entry easier.
  • Slow down to ensure that you can respond in a timely manner to all obstacles that might come your way. You might decide to stop altogether if a car is coming. 
  • Keep looking around throughout the manoeuvre as pedestrians might be walking around, and other users might try to get into the same bay. 

Step 4: Use Your Mirror for Reference

When trying to park into your target bay, you might decide to use a focal point for reference. Your instructor might point one out for you. If not, use your door mirror as a reference. 

Once the door mirror is in line with the first line of the bay you have chosen, get ready to turn.

Step 5: Aim for the Outer Line of Your Targeted Bay

Once you have passed the first line by around 1dt, steer full lock towards the bay. Do so while your car is moving slowly. 

At the beginning of this movement, the left side of your car will be pointing to the beginning of the second line of your chosen parking bay. If you have turned correctly, the tires of your car will slightly cross this line before entering the chosen bay. 

Step 6: Straighten Up

Don’ts start to straightening up your car immediately as this might leave your car at an angle, and you might need to try the manoeuvre again. Instead, start to straighten the steering will slowly as the car comes into position. Then, straighten the steering wheel completely once the car is fully in the parking space. Do so before you come to a stop to avoid dry steering.

Step 7: Check That You Are Straight

Your door mirrors should give you an indication regarding whether you are in the right space. You can also use the interior mirror to ensure that your car is in line with the car behind you. 

Bottom Line

The hardest part of driving forwards into a parking bay is that you will need to reverse to exit it. And, this means that visibility will be limited. Make sure you follow the guidelines and help of your instructor throughout the process.

What Is An Intensive Driving Course?

What Is An Intensive Driving Course

Learning to drive is a right of passage for many. Once you’ve passed your driving test, you’re free to travel where you please offering a great sense of independence.

Until then, you have to learn to drive safely.

The standard way to learn is with a registered driving instructor with 1 or 2 hours of lessons taken regularly. Some people only require a few lessons to pass. Others need more.

Not only can you choose to learn over a series of weeks but you can also learn to drive in an intensive course.

With many people trying to schedule their busy lives and fit lessons in, many are looking to these intensive courses to help them learn fast and pass their test swiftly.

What Is An Intensive Course?

Many learner drivers require twenty to forty lessons before they undertake their test. If someone chooses to take one lesson per week, it could take over six months to pass which can frustrate many people.

With an intensive course, many learners take a week or two to be taught and take their test in a quick and easy program. It’s aimed at those who can learn in this way, so it’s not for everyone. It offers a service that can result in faster learning and could cost you less than standard lessons, resulting in you potentially passing your test sooner.

The vehicular teachings are exactly the same, the lessons are just condensed within a few days rather than weeks. Instead of an hour or two a week, you spend five hours a day for a week or two, in a concentrated way of learning, until you feel ready to take your test.


You’ll work your way through the standard format of learning the highway code, learning the controls of the car and how to navigate the UK roads. Like a standard lesson, you’ll learn one to one with an experienced driving instructor, who works with you through your blocked time. Once you’ve completed your allocated lessons and feel ready, most driving schools arrange for a test shortly after completion of your course.

You can normally choose between learning in your local area, or travel to a driving centre that facilitates these intensive courses. Make sure to pick which is the most convenient option for you and offers you the best learning experience.

Because you are fully submerged in this learning environment for long periods of time, you are less likely to forget instructions, making it easier to build your knowledge up.

Many companies offer package pricing for an intensive driving course, meaning it could also work out cheaper for the learner. This may mean you forking out the full cost before learning but, on average, you’ll end up paying less than if you followed the standard lesson structure.

A big perk of an intensive course is being able to fast track your driving test, so once you’ve learnt everything and it’s fresh in your mind, you can go on to take it soon after.

This intensive environment isn’t for everyone, but for those who take to it, it can be a quick and convenient way of learning to drive.

Intensive Driving Courses Vs Normal – What’s The Difference?

Intensive Driving Courses Vs Normal

When learning to drive, one of the biggest decisions is if you want to learn gradually, having lessons and spreading out the cost week-on-week, or condense everything into a week-long, intensive driving course.

There are pros and cons to each, but first, it’s important to understand the difference before making a decision.

Remember: just because one option suits a particular individual, it’s unlikely to be the same for everyone else.


It’s no myth that learning to drive can prove to be expensive in some circumstances. Although the reward greatly outweighs the cost, when learning to drive it’s key to understand what costs are involved, and which method is best suited to you.

It all depends on the individual, but some may find investing upfront in an intensive driving course is more cost-efficient than spending money on weekly lessons, which can sometimes stretch over a longer period of time.

Review your options and see which is likely to work best for you, considering factors such as time off college, university, or work if you were to opt for the intensive course.


Everyone has their own way of learning, but there are several differences between how information can be absorbed during normal and intensive courses.

Intensive courses condense information tightly together in the space of a week, which works for some, but others could find themselves unable to take so much in over such a short period of time.

Regular courses mean the information is spread out, so you have longer to digest it, but having to refresh your memory each week may prove more difficult for some.



When learning as part of an intensive course, weather and road conditions are likely to stay very similar throughout the week, which means you could learn only in beaming sunshine, or heavy rain, each day.

Partaking in weekly lessons, which span across several months, means conditions will vary week on week, and you’re likely to experience multiple seasons and weather conditions.

Again, it’s all based on the individual, but some may benefit from one more than the other.


Pressure to pass

We all want to do our best when it comes to learning to drive, and many of us put pressure on ourselves to do so.

While tests can be stressful for everyone, before deciding which option to take consider how you’d feel if you passed or failed in either scenario.

Some of us may think a week of intensive learning would feel more of a blow than several months, but everyone is different, so make the right decision for you, and try not to worry too much!