Becoming a Driver

Becoming a Union Approved Driver allows you to drive any of our minibus fleet for your CSP trips, training or competitions. This approval process has no validity if looking to drive elsewhere or hire external vehicles.

To become a Union Approved Driver you must meet the criteria listed in sections one and two. If you pass the licence and driver checks to qualify to become a union approved driver, you will need to complete your theory and practical tests.

  • Part One - Licence Checks
    • Be at least 21 years old
    • Have a full UK Driving Licence for at least 2 years with a manual Car category (B) on it
    • Be a a current staff member of Imperial College or Imperial College Union or a full member of Imperial College Union  (current student).

    If you do not meet the hold the above licence, you are unable to drive a minibus and become a Union Approved Driver. If you meet the above criteria, please move onto part two.

  • Part Two - DVLA Driver Check
    • Have you received any endorsements (penalty points) in the last three years? This will be checked through your minibus application via a DVLA check code.
    • Have you ever been disqualified from driving?
    • Have you had any accidents in the last three years
    • Do you have any restrictions on the entitlements on your driving licence?
    • Are you over 67 years old?

If you answered ‘No’ to all the questions in Part two, you can start your Minibus Application and begin the minibus testing process. 

If at any time the answers you have given to the above questions in section one or two change then please contact us. This may change your driving status. The operations of the minibus fleet are governed by a main transport policy and an operational document.

Minibus Testing

Once your licence has been checked and approved by our Student Activities and Development team. There are two parts to becoming an approved union driver, a theory and a practical test. All Union Approved Drivers have to have passed this induction for insurance purposes, and to ensure that you can safely operate the union vehicles. You will receive confirmation emails as you complete our licence and driving checks. You can track your status progress through our driver approval process. 

  • Theory Test

    You must complete the Theory test before you undertake your Practical test. The theoretical test involves familiarizing yourself with the training materials, related to minibuses, in the training hub and then answering a set of multiple choice questions on eActivities. The questions are taken from sample DSA minibus theory test questions and the information in this and can be completed “open book” style. 

    All the relevant information to pass your theory test can be found here Minibus Theory Information .pptx

  • Practical Test

    The practical part of the induction needs to be booked in advance. This must be done online via the Union shop, the cost for this scheduled session is £30 (Exclusive of VAT).

    Buy a Minibus Test Credit here

    The website may not display any available dates, or display dates which are “out of stock”. This means that there are no sessions currently scheduled, or in case of the latter, that these sessions are full. 

    The Practical test involves familiarisation with the minibuses, including learning how to do the routine checks before setting off on your trip. This is followed by a drive around the local area. In particular, the assessor will be checking to see that you drive safely, can manage the length of the vehicle and are generally competent with operating the minibuses.

Driver Status

Once you become a fully approved union driver, your status will last three years from the date you passed the practical test. Within this time, you can be allocated as the designated driver for club, society or project trips through the eActivities booking system.

Renewing your driver status

Due to the pandemic and restrictions it put on our minibus activities, we are changing our renewing process. If you would like to continue driving the union minibuses, then you will need to have a re-test of your theory and practical minibus tests.

We now ask that you complete both theory and practical tests so we can insure all approved drivers are up to date on transport legislation and competent safely transporting students. For all the information on our minibus testing process, look here: Minibus Tests | Imperial College Union 

Minibus FAQs

  • What happens if you don't pass the practical?

    If you are not up to the required standard during your practical assessment, you will have the chance to re-test at no extra cost, Please contact our inbox to book on to the next available test. If you fail a second time, you will have to purchase a separate test credit and go through the process again. 

    Please note that the minibuses are all manual vehicles, and you should only attempt the minibus assessment if you are comfortable driving using a manual gearbox. .

  • What do you need to bring to your practical test?

    On the day, please arrive promptly at the Union Help Desk on the ground floor of the main Union Building in Beit Quad. Remember, the staff are not able to wait for you if you are late!

    When you come to the practical part of your introduction please remember to bring the following:

    • Your driving licence (if you have the new style UK licence this includes the paper section as well as the plastic card as BOTH parts need to be seen)
    • Proof of your Minibus Test Credit purchase

    Once you have passed the Theory and Practical tests, you will be granted approval to drive minibuses for three years. After this period you will have to go through the process again.

  • How will I know my driver status is expiring? 

    When that time period is set to expire, you will receive an automated message from our system, indicating that your driver status has either expired, or is about to expire. This email will be sent to the email which you provided when you signed up as a driver. If you have no intention/need of driving the minibuses, then you don't need to take any further action.