Sat nav devices have become a must-have for drivers. They offer live navigation support, precise guidance, and important traffic alerts, making driving safer, more efficient, and less stressful.

Since December 2017, sat navs have been part of the driving test in the UK. For your driving test your examiner will provide and set up the sat nav, and you will be asked to navigate to a programmed destination.

Driving with a Sat Nav

Navigating with a sat nav can be a game-changer, especially when driving somewhere unfamiliar or trying to avoid traffic jams. However, the devices can present a few challenges and things to remember. During your automatic or manual driving lessons, your instructor will explain how to use the sat nav safely and provide a range of opportunities for you to become accomplished at driving in different scenarios while following the directions.

Top Tips for Learning to Drive with a Sat Nav

Ensure that the sat nav does not obstruct your view in any way, whether it is attached to the dashboard or windscreen, you must ensure that you have a clear view of the road. A blocked view can result in penalty points, or in more severe cases a ban, or fine. Your sat nav should be positioned so that it is easy to glance at, without significantly diverting your attention from the road.

You should set your sat nav and check the volume, before starting your journey, this will prevent distractions while driving. If you need to make changes, pull over safely and update the sat nav, it’s illegal and unsafe to operate a sat nav while driving, this includes when you are stationary in traffic.

Sat navs are not infallible, so always stay aware of your surroundings and avoid relying on the device totally. You need to be attentive to road signs, and other users. Always check the speed limits with road signs and trust your car’s speedometer over the sat nav. Remember that maps may not always have been updated, speed limits or road markings may have been changed, so always use your judgment.

Practice is key when you are learning to drive, just like your initial driving lessons where you mastered the key skills of operating the car, the more you use the sat nav, it will soon become part of your driving routine.  The position of your sat nav should allow you to glance and check your route when it is safe to do so. However, you need to ensure that you always pay attention to the road and surroundings at all times and are not distracted by the sat nav.