After a year of rocketing around on an International Driving License, the time finally came to sign up for a real, bona fide Taiwanese scooter license. After the devastating failure the previous week of failing the computerised ‘written’ element, we tried again (completing the test on the government web-site would have helped, seeing as it is an exact copy of the final exam… over confidence!).
The total test format is as follows:
1. Height and weight test (where everyone in the room can see)
2. Eye test – basically involves saying which way an arrow is pointing…
3. ‘Physical Exam’ – squat once and grip your hands … all overseen by a doctor!
4. The dreaded computerised exam … split into multiple choice and true/false sections. Easy if you practice – I got 98%!
5. The real driving test! The test course (if you can call it that) could probably fit into a school gymnasium. The first section you pass by driving very slowly (unnatural on this island) along a perfectly straight line, and you fail if you take less than 7 seconds or if you touch the sensitive strip along the sides – this is actually surprisingly difficult!
Then, you meet a series of tests. First, is a red traffic light. If you successfully stop at this, go when it is green, and repeat the same thing for a pedestrian and then railway crossing you pass! That’s it!