FV 105 : (Part 1) Driving tips from a French instructor

02.01.2019 - By French Voices Podcast | Learn French | Interviews with Native French Speakers | French Culture

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Hélène is a very energetic French woman who loves her career working in road safety. As a former driving instructor, she'll share driving tips and will tell you how you get your driving licence in France. Compare with your own country!

In this first episode, we'll discuss the name given to her occupation. We'll also talk about the point system in France, how it works and what happens when you lose points. Hélène will take you through the process of how you get your driving licence in France (there are a theory test and a practical test). What happens on test day and which mistakes are eliminatory? What do learners typically find the most challenging about driving? Listen to find out!

Also check out the links in the shownotes for more tips about driving in France.
Vocab List
agglomération (nf) = conurbation, urban area
auto-école (nf) = driving school
capot (nm) = bonnet, hood
ceinture (nf) = seatbelt
chauffard (nm) = road hog
code (de la route) (nm) = driving theory test
créneau (nm) = parallel parking
débrayer = to declutch, disengage the clutch
embrayage (nm) = clutch
embrayer = to engage, to put in gear
essuie-glace (nm) = windcreen wiper
excès de vitesse (nm) = speeding
frein (nm) = brake
freiner = to brake
griller un feu (rouge) = to run a red light
pare-brise (nm) = windscreen, windshield
permis (de conduire) (nm) = driving licence
vitesse (nf) = speed; gear

What is the official name and what is the commonly used name to refer to Hélène's occupation?
When in the earliest age when you can get your driving licence in France?
What 3 types of things are being assessed during the driving exam?
Why can't the learner know straight away whether he passed or failed the driving test?


Officially: "enseignant(e) de la conduite". Commonly referred as "moniteur/trice d'auto-école".
18 years of age.
Driving, manoeuvring the car at least once and answering 2 questions (one indoor, one outdoor) about finding where a command is or check something on the car.
This isn't done anymore since driving instructors have been abused/physically aggressed when the learner had failed.

Links & Resources

French Your Way Podcast, Episode 75: "France Travel Tips (PART 3): Driving": frenchyourway.com.au/podcast75
"Tips for driving in France" (article)

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