what is a driving instructor?

A driving instructor is a professional who teaches people how to operate vehicles safely and confidently. You equip learners with essential driving skills, impart knowledge of traffic rules and regulations, and prepare them for the driving test. As a driving instructor, you become a mentor and guide for novice drivers, playing a crucial role in shaping their driving habits and fostering a culture of responsible driving.

Driving instructors work with learners from various backgrounds, such as teenagers eager to get their first driving licence, adults looking to improve their driving skills, or even foreigners adapting to the driving conditions and laws of the road in India. The process of teaching encompasses both theoretical and practical aspects of driving, requiring you to provide classroom instruction and on-road training. As a driving instructor, your goal is to ensure that students not only pass their driving tests but also become skilled and responsible drivers who prioritise safety on the roads.

If you have a passion for driving, strong communication skills and the patience to teach others, a career as a driving instructor could be an excellent choice for you. Keep reading to learn more about this fulfilling profession.

find your job

average salary of a driving instructor

According to Payscale, the average salary of a driving instructor is around ₹275,000 annually. Those with more experienced or specialised skills may earn higher salaries. Additionally, instructors working in metropolitan areas or for reputable driving schools may also enjoy better compensation. Generally speaking, entry-level driving instructors can expect to earn around ₹55,000 per year, with earning potential reaching as high as ₹705,000 per year for experienced instructors.

factors that affect a driving instructor’s pay

The salary of a driving instructor depends on a combination of factors. Experience is one of the most important, as more experienced instructors typically command higher salaries due to greater expertise and a proven track record. With years of experience, instructors can also provide better training and more insight into driving challenges, making them more valued by employers and students alike.

Another factor that can impact your salary is the location where you work. Driving instructors in metropolitan areas often tend to earn more than those in smaller towns or rural areas, mainly because of higher living costs and increased demand for driving lessons in urban areas.

Holding additional certifications, such as advanced driving or defensive driving, can also make a difference to your earning potential. Specialised skills and qualifications can distinguish instructors from their peers and make them more appealing to potential employers or clients.

Instructors who specialise in teaching commercial vehicles, motorcycles or other specific types of vehicles may have different salary prospects than those who teach regular cars. Specialisation often requires additional training and certifications but can also offer unique opportunities for higher earnings.

Finally, working hours will impact the pay of a driving instructor. If you are willing to work weekends or evenings, you may have the opportunity to earn more due to the increased demand for lessons during those times.

Male employee smiling and looking to his right. Groomed beard and mustache. Wearing a checkered shirt. Primary color blue. Secondary colors cream and yellow.
Male employee smiling and looking to his right. Groomed beard and mustache. Wearing a checkered shirt. Primary color blue. Secondary colors cream and yellow.

types of driving instructors

The most common types of driving instructors include:

  • private driving instructor: private driving instructors work independently, providing personalised lessons to individual students. You often use your own vehicle for training and have the flexibility to set your own schedules and rates. For those with previous work experience, this option is suitable if you're looking to have more control over your work hours and clientele.
  • driving school instructor: driving school instructors work for established driving schools, teaching students in a structured environment. You follow the school's curriculum and schedule and usually have a steady flow of students. This option offers job stability and regular working hours.
  • defensive driving instructor: defensive driving instructors teach advanced driving techniques to experienced drivers, focusing on safe driving in challenging conditions. You help drivers improve their skills and navigate potentially hazardous situations on the road. This role requires additional training and certifications.
  • commercial driving instructor: commercial driving instructors specialise in teaching how to operate large vehicles, like trucks and buses. This role requires in-depth knowledge of commercial vehicle operations and regulations. Instructors in this field often have experience as commercial drivers themselves.
  • motorcycle instructor: motorcycle instructors teach students how to ride motorcycles safely and confidently. You focus on specific skills required for two-wheelers, such as balance, throttle control and braking techniques. This role requires a passion for motorcycles and specialised training.

working as a driving instructor

As a driving instructor, you teach students the skills and knowledge needed to drive safely. Your days will be filled with practical driving lessons, classroom instruction and helping students prepare for driving tests. If you're passionate about driving and enjoy teaching, read on to learn more about this career.


education and skills

Some of the academic qualifications for driving instructors include:

  • driving licence: to become a driving instructor, you must hold a valid driving licence for the type of vehicle you intend to teach. This demonstrates your driving competency and is a basic requirement for this profession.
  • certification: in India, driving instructors typically need certification from a recognised driving school or a government-approved institution. This certification ensures you have the necessary skills and knowledge to teach driving effectively.
  • experience: most driving schools require instructors to have a few years of driving experience. This experience provides a practical understanding of driving challenges and helps instructors teach with confidence.

driving instructor skills and competencies

Some of the qualities of a driving instructor include:

  • patience: as a driving instructor, you work with learners who may be nervous and are likely to make mistakes. Patience is crucial in guiding students through their learning process and helping them become confident drivers.
  • communication skills: effective communication is important for explaining driving concepts, defining traffic rules and providing feedback. You need to articulate instructions clearly and provide constructive criticism.
  • adaptability: instructors must adapt their teaching methods to suit different students' learning styles and needs. Being flexible and accommodating helps create a positive learning environment.

FAQs about working as a driving instructor

Here, you will find the answers to the most frequently asked questions about the profession of a driving instructor.

thank you for subscribing to your personalised job alerts.