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Speed awareness courses explained

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If you've been caught speeding, rather than receiving points on your license, you may be invited to attend a speed awareness course. But what actually happens at a speed awareness course and how much is it going to set you back?

Here’s what you can expect.

A speed camera with cars quickly passing by

To book a speed awareness course, you need:

  • Your driving licence
  • The letter sent to you by the police
  • Your payment details

Once you’ve got these, follow these steps:

  • Enter the reference number and pin that should be on your course offer letter that the police sent to you. 
  • Enter your personal details, like your name, address, email and your driving licence number.
  • Select whether you’d like to continue as a guest or make an account and create a password. You’ll then be able to login to your account and access your course or manage your personal details.
  • To book a course, go to 'access my courses' and you’ll be able to choose between a physical course and a virtual course. You’ll then be given a list of course providers. 
  • Select a course and you’ll go to the provider’s website where you can choose a convenient date and time. You can choose to take it during the day, in the evening or at the weekend. If you’re attending a course in person, you can also choose the best location for you.
  • Once you’ve paid, you should get a confirmation email. You can find more information on your course, including your course provider’s contact information in the 'access my course' section of the account. If you have any issues you should contact your course provider. 

Attending a virtual speed awareness course

If you’re attending a virtual course, you need a computer, laptop, tablet or mobile that has:

  • Internet access with a stable internet connection
  • A webcam 
  • Microphone
  • Speakers or headphones
  • A fully-charged battery that lasts for 3 hours, or access to power
  • Zoom or Microsoft Teams - you don’t have to download these, you can use them in your browser
  • Your driving licence 
  • A space where you’re not disturbed 

You’re only eligible for a speed awareness course if you’ve broken the speed limit by a certain amount of miles per hour. Here are the minimum and maximum speeds where you’re eligible for a speed awareness course:

Speed limit Minimum speed Maximum speed
20 mph
24 mph
31 mph
30 mph
35 mph
42 mph
40 mph
46 mph
53 mph
50 mph
57 mph
64 mph
60 mph
68 mph
75 mph
70 mph
79 mph
86 mph

This is at the discretion of the police force though. If you're caught speeding at all, they're within their rights to give you the fine and the penalty points. And speeds above the 'maximum speed' usually don't have the option of a speed awareness course.

There are other criteria that make you more or less eligible for a speed awareness course. But these vary depending on your local police force.

The cost of a speed awareness course depends on where you live, but they generally cost between £80-£100.

Here’s how much it costs for a virtual speed awareness course in each force area in England and Wales:

Force area Course provider Fee Telephone number
Avon and Somerset
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
Bedfordshire
DriveTech
£89.00
0344 264 6323
Cambridgeshire
DriveTech
£89.00
0344 264 6323
Cheshire
Cheshire
£85.00
01606 363 700
Cleveland
Hartlepool Borough Council
£73.00
01429 523 803
Cumbria
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
Derbyshire
DriveTech
£89.00
0344 264 6323
Devon and Cornwall
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
Durham
Hartlepool Borough Council
£73.00
01429 523 803
Dyfed-Powys
Dyfed-Powys
£92.00
01267 226 479
Essex
Safer Essex Roads Partnership
£90.00
01277 636 675
Gloucestershire
Driver Education Gloucestershire
£85.00
01452 754 562
Gwent
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
Hampshire
Hampshire Police
£85.00
0238 047 8700
Hertfordshire
Hertfordshire County Council
£90.00
0300 123 4035
Humberside
Safer Roads Humber
£95.00
01482 399 065
Kent
Kent County Council
£92.00
03000 418282
Lancashire
Lancashire
£87.00
01772 410 950
Leicestershire
Leicestershire County Council
£91.00
0116 305 8787
Lincolnshire
Lincolnshire County Council
£90.00
01522 782 068
London
DriveTech
£91.00
0344 264 6323
Manchester
DriveSafe
£90.00
0300 123 1518
Merseyside
DriveTech
£79.00
0344 264 6323
Norfolk
Norfolk County Council
£90.00
01603 638 136
North Wales
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
North Yorkshire
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
Northamptonshire
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
Northern Ireland
DriveTech
£84.00
0344 264 6323
Northumbria
DriveTech
£89.00
0344 264 6323
Nottinghamshire
DriveTech
£89.00
0344 264 6323
South Wales
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
South Yorkshire
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
Staffordshire
Staffordshire County Council
£85.00
0300 111 8012
Suffolk
Suffolk County Council
£90.00
0345 606 6043
Surrey
DriveTech
£89.00
0344 264 6323
Sussex
West Sussex County Council
£90.00
0330 222 8999
Thames Valley
DriveTech
£89.00
0344 264 6323
Warwickshire
Warwickshire County Council
£83.00
01926 412 990
West Mercia
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
West Midlands
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
West Yorkshire
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805
Wiltshire
TTC
£88.00
0330 024 1805

The course is designed to change your attitude towards breaking the speed limit. The intention is to make you more mindful of your speed and the impact this can have on other road users. Most courses encourage participation and interaction to keep you interested.

You don’t have to take any tests and you don't have to do any actual driving. As long as you complete the workshop to the trainer’s satisfaction - that means listening and participating - you’ve passed the course. 

The course itself should last around 4 hours, though this may vary depending on where you are. 

Most speed awareness courses, whether online or in person, have around 20 people attending and 2 instructors.

You need to bring your driving licence along with you. You show this to your instructor privately before the course begins - this applies virtually too. 

If you don’t have it, you might have to show 2 forms of ID. If you don’t bring any ID with you, you might not be allowed to take the course.

The courses are usually run by organisations on behalf of the police, like the National Driver Offender Retraining Scheme (NDORS).

When you finish, the course provider gets in touch with the police and tells them you’ve completed the course. 

You can take a speed awareness course once every 3 years. 

If you’re caught speeding again within that time, you have to accept points on your driving licence and/or a fine. 

You might be able to rebook your course in advance if you cant make the course date. You can do this on your UKROEd account.

If you’re late, you can't enter the course once registration has started. You might also be charged the course fee again.

If you miss the course you might also be charged an extra fee, and you’ll have to rebook if you want to escape points and a fine. You can go to your account to find out if you can rebook your course.

If you don’t complete the course, the course instructor will inform the police and they’ll contact you to explain what you do next. If it’s within the enforcement period (this is on your letter) and you haven’t paid the fixed penalty or completed a course, you have to go to court.

A speeding conviction on your licence is likely to increase your car insurance costs - taking a speed awareness course should avoid this.

What our motor insurance expert says

"Car insurance with an SP30 speeding conviction costs £682, on average*. With that in mind, I'd always recommend taking a speed awareness course if you're eligible for one.

"Because you don't get points on your licence, you're less likely to see your car insurance costs increase with a speed awareness course. But if your car insurance company asks about speed awareness courses, you have to tell them. And if they do ask, they may use it as a factor when working out your insurance costs.

"There's also a good chance that taking a speed awareness course could make you a more mindful driver. So you're less likely to speed in future."

Not unless they ask you. There’s inconsistency between insurers - some might ask if you’ve taken a speed awareness course, others might not. 

If they ask, or you mention it, the insurer might increase your insurance price. If they ask, you have to tell them. Otherwise your insurance might be invalid.

But a speed awareness course isn’t a driving conviction, and according to The National Driver Offender Retraining Scheme (NDORS) it shouldn’t be treated as one. 

According to NDORS, you only have to give your insurer the information it asks for. This is thanks to a rule change in 2013. Before this, you’d have to volunteer any information that could be relevant to your policy. 

When you get a quote with Confused.com, we don't ask if you've taken a speed awareness course. We only ask about driving convictions.

*Based on average cost by a driver who's declared a speeding conviction (SP30) between July 2022 and June 2023.

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