The Qatar Driving Test
One Woman's Personal Experience Of The Qatar Driving Test
I arrived at Al Rayyan Driving School at the official test time. The police arrived half an hour later, and opened the test building. We handed in the receipts from when we paid for the test. The police gave us files, and started calling women for the theory test.
There were two separate lockets. A policeman called "Asian English" and pointed towards one of the lockets. We entered the locket, where we were separated from the examiner by a screen. The examiner held up pictures and asked us to identify them.
I was asked what three different lines were for (the give way line, the parking line and the pedestrian line) and the meaning of five different signs. I nearly failed on the lines as I did not know we had to learn them. (Of course, I knew their function, but I did not know what their official name was.)
In addition, the policeman used different names from what had been written on the test guide, and did not understand the official names. For example, the policeman did not understand "Turning backward prohibited" (which I had memorised) and would only accept "No Return". Again, instead of slippery carriageway we had to say "road slippery".
After passing this part of the test, the policeman signed our files.
I was given a car. I had to drive a car alone (a policeman watched from outside the car) and I had to drive the car slowly up a small hill, then reverse it backwards again. If you stall the car, go too fast or let the car slip back you fail the test. After passing, the policeman signed my form and I continued onto the next stage of the test.
In this section of the test you have to reverse into a small box without touching anything. The car must fit in exactly, and although you can do it as slowly as you want, you can only get one attempt and you are only allowed to reverse, not move forward.
I was not told whether I had passed this section or not, just asked to wait for fifteen minutes. My file was taken from me. After fifteen minutes we were called one by one to the waiting buses those who had failed were not called.
There were three buses and three cars. Some of us were put in the buses. In each car there was a policeman, a female assistant who carried the file, and two students. One of the students drove the car, and each car had a bus following it.
I was not told immediately if I had passed or failed. I returned to the main building where the theory test was held, and waited until my name was called out. I paid a hundred and fifty riyals and was given my driving licence.
Now all I have to do is persuade my husband to buy me a car! (That's a hint, darling, if you are reading this.)
Al Rayah Driving School
Doha Driving Centre
Gulf Driving School (close to the airport)
United Driving Co
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