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    driveJohnsons

Corporate Values

Overview

driveJohnsons has a consumer rating of 3.05 stars from 43 reviews indicating that most customers are generally satisfied with their purchases. driveJohnsons ranks 20th among Driving Schools sites.

  • Service
    6
  • Value
    6
  • Quality
    6
Positive reviews (last 12 months): 20%
Positive
1
Neutral
0
Negative
4
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What reviewers want you to know

Positive highlights

No positive highlights yet

Critical highlights

  • My previous instructor was great from that company, but I had lost his contact details so couldn't resume with him.
  • Arranged for Saturday lesson and to book a block of 10 lessons.
How would you rate driveJohnsons?
Top Positive Review

“Last minute driving lessons!”

Phoenix W.
7/22/21

DriveJohnson's is a fantastic driving school and I highly recommend them. After being let down by another driving school at last minute and with a test coming up, dj really same and saved the day! They managed to find me an excellent instructor quickly who gave me a few lessons before taking me to my test and passing first time. Thank you for all your help and support!

See positive reviews
Top Critical Review

“Are these 5 star ratings real?”

michael F.
9/12/20

Not sure about these 5 star ratings. My experience with this company has been pretty much the same as the other 16x negative reviews. Booking goes through fine. Then all of a sudden, the lesson is cancelled at the last minute. Trying to arrange a new lesson is almost impossible, due to them "experiencing a lot of calls" (I call b. S.). And therefore the chances of getting my money back is even more remote. I would avoid this company like the AIDS virus!

See critical reviews

Reviews (43)

Rating

Timeframe

Other

Reviews that mention popular keywords

instructor (28) 10 lessons (3)
michaelf1958
1 review
0 helpful votes
September 12th, 2020

Not sure about these 5 star ratings. My experience with this company has been pretty much the same as the other 16x negative reviews. Booking goes through fine. Then all of a sudden, the lesson is cancelled at the last minute. Trying to arrange a new lesson is almost impossible, due to them "experiencing a lot of calls" (I call b. S.). And therefore the chances of getting my money back is even more remote. I would avoid this company like the AIDS virus!

yvanr3
1 review
0 helpful votes
August 16th, 2021

After making the payment, the instructor failed to arrange the classes, he would tell that he would call back and I wouldn't hear from him for weeks, until I reached him back to ask again.
When I contacted the customer's services complaining they just sent an email apologising but did not take any further action, either to refund my money for the classes I had remaining nor to book the classes with another instructor...
Lack of professionalism and respect for people's money and time!

Service
Value
Returns
Quality
charlottem378
1 review
0 helpful votes
June 21st, 2021

Like the other negative reviews say, drivers are unreliable, they don't show up and no one gives you any notice. It's as if the company doesn't even have any contact with the instructors and contacting them takes forever. Currently in the process of trying to get a refund.
AVOID!

Tip for consumers:
Just avoid at all costs and pay a bit extra for somewhere that will actually get you to the test.

Products used:
I had 2 lessons that were spaced out very far apart because the driver didn't answer my calls or texts for months

Service
Value
Quality
cb554
1 review
0 helpful votes
March 16th, 2020

Leighton Buzzard - instructor Mark

Got to test and randomly charged extra right at the last minute. Went back to driveJohnsons - not interested. Very poor.

ianal
1 review
0 helpful votes
May 7th, 2021

OK I am not really a person who complain but that is over everything! First of all they offered me to refund my money but already 3 weeks no money! I tried to call many times they always say I will call you back ( Sara, Lisa, etc) and never call! They couldn't find a driver for me and offered me refund it is not my fault. If so give me my money back, I don't understand what is problem with this company, the service is below everything, I am really angry and nobody even trying to help me.

Service
Value
Shipping
Returns
Quality
ap362
1 review
0 helpful votes
February 29th, 2020

I booked for my sons birthday. Instructor did not show up. When I called head office they contacted her and she said she had been outside the house ( Blatant lie) Office staff very apologetic and rebooked for another instructor a week later. He actually turned up and lesson was ok. However for 10 days since then I'm trying to book another and it's impossible. He is refusing to give me one hour slots and the next lesson is 2 weeks away at not a convenient time. This would have been a month since the first lesson was scheduled. Awful service and not acceptable. I will have to try elsewhere as this whole experience has left a bitter taste in my mouth

melissae145
1 review
0 helpful votes
January 7th, 2020

TOTALLY UNRELIABLE DRIVING INSTRUCTOR! THE COMPANY DOESN'T KNOW WHO WORKS FOR THEM OR WHO THEY EMPLOY, LACK OF PROFESSIONALISM! THEY WILL STRING YOU ALONG FOR 30+ LESSONS AND THEN ONCE YOU BOOK YOUR TEST THEY DROP YOU BEING VERY ARROGANT AND RUDE THINKING THEY KNOW BEST LEAVING YOU WITH NO CAR OR INSTRUCTOR. THE COMPANY DOESN'T HAVE THE INSTRUCTOR ON THEIR SYSTEM AND ARE UTTER USELESS WHEN DEALING WITH COMPLAINTS. THE INSTRUCTOR ISNT WHO HE SAYS HE IS! WOULD NOT RECOMMEND, STAY AWAY FROM THIS COMPANY!

kayn49
1 review
0 helpful votes
January 28th, 2020

Honestly it's been the worst experience I wanted to change my transmission from Manuel to Auto and upon doing so asked if I had to contact my instructor was told no and that everything would be handled on their end. They informed me the process would take 24-48hrs but nearly two weeks later I am having to chase them up only to be told that I've lost 2hours as I didn't cancel my future lessons with the instructor. This was no fault of mine and they proceed to take my money and refused to refund me for the outstanding lessons as I'd prefer to go somewhere that actually takes ownership when a staff member gives wrong information. Be careful when booking with them and make sure they tell you all required information as they seem to pick and choose what's relevant to fit their agenda.

sadafh
1 review
0 helpful votes
November 13th, 2019

Unprofessional, they steal your money, drivers waste your time, cancel lessons, dont show up etc. Admin are equally as useless (although some are fairly nice, but no one actually solves your problem). Avoid. I learnt relatively little and my driver bailed on me and stopped teaching about less than 2 weeks before my test :)

phoenixw13
1 review
0 helpful votes
July 22nd, 2021

DriveJohnson's is a fantastic driving school and I highly recommend them. After being let down by another driving school at last minute and with a test coming up, dj really same and saved the day! They managed to find me an excellent instructor quickly who gave me a few lessons before taking me to my test and passing first time. Thank you for all your help and support!

litart
1 review
0 helpful votes
May 4th, 2021

Had my first driving lesson booked for 2pm on 14th April- had a call from the DJ team at around 11 on the day to which I answered and they put the phone down straight away tried to contact back via email and call no answer contacted instructor also no answer so waiting to 2pm cause I wasn't sure what was going on, instructor never turned up so I called DJ again finally got through, they tell me instructor wasn't feeling well and had to cancel and they will contact me within 2 working days - which I understood especially during Covid times, but no 0 contact. I waiting over a week, then decided to call back as it was getting ridiculous- called back lady apologised and rebooked me for 10 May- almost a month later, which I thought okay, there's probably a back up of bookings and accepted...

4th May I called back as I've been checking my the app daily, lesson still said unconfirmed. Lady on the phone say lesson was declined because I was too far, gave no explanation whatsoever as to why I was not contacted earlier, absolutely terrible - would never recommend to anyone, pay that little extra and go with AA or Red. What an absolutely waste of time and energy I am the paying customer, I should not be the one chasing for a product I have paid for.

Products used:
Nothing

Service
Value
Quality
brauliot
1 review
0 helpful votes
August 28th, 2020

I booked 10 lessons starting Friday.the driver did not arrive. I called to find out the issue? I was told by the receptionist "Lauren"that I am wrong and cancel if I want! The nastiest attitude ever! DONT GO THERE. BSM IS MUCH BETTER.

cynthiab344
1 review
2 helpful votes
June 7th, 2019

I had booked a driving lesson over the phone, got a text confirmation and the driver didn't turn up. I rang to make a complaint no one has got back to me. I called again and was given another appointment and a confirmed text, the next day the instructor cancelled the appointment said he was fully booked. A very poor service all round.

pauls1129
1 review
4 helpful votes
March 25th, 2019

Didn't even bother to turn up for first leason and made excuse he wrote it down for wrong day despite booking weeks in advance

laurens322
1 review
3 helpful votes
January 3rd, 2019

Please avoid DrirveJohnson's who are unprofessional and just outright dodgy. I paid in advance for 10 lessons. My driving instructor said inappropriate things and was either late or never showed up for agreed appointments. I decided to cancel my remaining lessons and requested a refund for them. DriveJohnson's refused me a refund saying that their instructors are self employed and advised me that since starting my lessons my instructor no longer works for the company and therefore they cannot give me a refund. This has left me out of pocket by over £150. They should be ashamed of themselves.

abbiep14
1 review
0 helpful votes
March 18th, 2020

DriveJohnson's have been fantastic from start to finish. Their bookings process is simple and easy, the staff on the phones are really friendly and happy to answer any questions you have. I was allocated a brilliant instructor who explained things thoroughly and made lessons enjoyable. If you want to learn to drive, don't look anywhere else.

sandras440
1 review
3 helpful votes
August 27th, 2018

Only use this company if you want to spend hours on phone booking lessons that are then cancelled anything from a day before to an hour before the actual lesson and after wasting three weeks trying to get a lesson to then get told that they don't actually have any instructors for your postcode after all. Horrendous customer service.

abielg
1 review
3 helpful votes
April 4th, 2019

My driving instructor decides to let me know this morning on the day of my test that the car has "exploded". Mind you I was driving it yesterday, I demanded my refund from him and now I'm having to wait a whole 2 months before I can book my next test. Devestated is not the word I am feeling right now.

jb1031
1 review
1 helpful vote
April 9th, 2019

They took the money in cash, refused to deliver the package of lessons as promised, and then refused to refund the full amount. Ashleigh, the office manager, hasn't got a clue! And she refuses to respond to any calls regarding a refund. You've been warned... AVOID!

jordans83
1 review
4 helpful votes
September 1st, 2017

Instructor was deplorably organised and very hard to ever get hold of to book a lesson. When it came to the test, he not only tried to take me at the wrong time despite knowing weeks in advance when and where it is, but also took me to the wrong centre leaving me out of pocket without a chance to do the test. Drivejohnsons refused any responsibility of their employees. Terrible service. AVOID.

dineshg5
1 review
3 helpful votes
February 2nd, 2019

Arranged driving lessons for my son who has just turned 17 as a brithday present. Arranged for Saturday lesson and to book a block of 10 lessons. Was let down on the first Saturday as instructor rang shortly before the lesson was due, to say he would not be able to make it as was still completing a lesson elsewhere and wouldn't be able to make it in time. I offered to bring my son to him but he declined. He offered a shorter lesson but added that he would be very tired (!) having done a lot of lessons already that day. As if i would accept this. All this for This lessons I had booked prior with head office. I phoned head office and they were very apologetic and offered a new regular slot with a different instructor starting the following week. That lesson was expected today but the instructor didn't show up. On ringing head office they informed me there had been a technical glitch with their new electronic diary system which meant that the booking had not been sent to the instructor. Again nothing could be done. My son was very disappointed having been let down by this driving school twice in a row. I will not take this risk again so will now go with a different driving school but feel thoroughly let down. I cannot comment on the quality of their driving instruction as never even got to see it. Sort out your bookings DriveJohnsons! DINESH

daphnez1
1 review
4 helpful votes
March 17th, 2018

Absolutely rubbish! Paid for a block of 20 hours, and was assigned an instructor. I was then informed that this specific driver was no longer with the company (but then later found out that he had actually been dismissed from the company 1 month prior to being assigned to me). When I phoned up to ask for a new one, I was told that my payment is currently sitting with the old instructor, and wait for it... I have to wait until he returns the payment before I can be given a new instructor. I was not accepting this bull, so I told them that I just want a refund, and they told me that my money is with the old instructor, the issue is now out of their hands, and I must chase him up myself (do I even have his details) WTF!

kevr1
1 review
5 helpful votes
May 22nd, 2016

I started taking lessons again after a 2 year gap from one of the other larger driving companies. My previous instructor was great from that company, but I had lost his contact details so couldn't resume with him. So I thought I'd give a relatively smaller independent company a go. Came across DriveJohnsons' youtube channel and was impressed (naive much) with what I saw and decided to give them a whirl.

I should have paid closer attention, there were tell tell signs during my first lesson that something wasn't quite right. Firstly my driving instructor was due to pick me up at 12.30pm, text me an hour before the lesson to say that he was going to be late and if I could do 1.30pm instead. Little did I know that this would turn out to be a regular occurrence. So he picked me up got chatting and I explained to him that I am a nervous driver and need to build up my confidence etc. The first lesson had no structure, there wasn't any focus on trying to tackle and learn about say roundabouts or bay parking or clutch control etc. No. Just general driving. By the end of the lesson he was like, 'see that went well, you are not a bad driver'. Not going to lie, this made me feel great. However, a good informative instructor will always back up his positives with things that they observed that you need to work on. If they sense you are weak on clutch control or roundabouts, then what they will say is, 'ok for the next lesson we will be tackling this until you are confident enough and then we will move on to this- but for now don't worry you are quite capable of driving well'. But there was no structure to any of the lessons, it was just general driving and every now and then we would do a manoeuvre, maybe once or twice, then we'd move on. At the time I thought this was normal, it is only now that I've changed driving instructors that I know it is not.

His time management was woeful to say the least. If it was an afternoon lesson, he would always delay it by half an hour. By the end of our time together- 6 months (had a 4 week holiday inbetween)- we changed the lesson time to 8am. This time though, he never delayed the lesson but would turn up at 7.40am expecting me to be ready. And instead of finishing the lesson at 9.40am, he would finish the 2 hour lesson at 9.20am! By the time the lesson was over I was so exhausted from driving that whenever I was meaning to confront him on this issue, I would forget and be glad to be home.

Earlier this year he stated that I was ready to book my test, even though something told me I wasn't, but being the naive fool that I am I booked it. This was when things really started to go from erratic to horrendous. Twice he never turned up to the appointed lesson at 8am in the morning. The first time I let it go because he said he was ill. However, the second time I sent him a reminder the morning of the lesson saying that I will be paying him that day, he replied back to me apologising saying that his alarm clock did "go off" and that my text was the thing that "woke him up" and if I could reschedule the lesson to that afternoon. Which I could not do as I'm a working adult and I had things to do that day! He would then continue to do this several times, rearranging MY scheduled lessons because a few of his pupils were "parents" and had to arrange child care needs for there kids, so he would sacrifice my lessons to book theirs in in my time instead!

When we did eventually have lessons, he would then constantly forget to do mock tests with me and would apologise and promise to do it the next week, then forget again. When I did request extra lessons from him within the week, even going as far to book a few days off work to do them, he would get back to me late saying he couldn't do them because he had to wait for his pupils to rearrange their times before getting back to me. But he had no problem rearrange MINE to accordate others! I finally lost it with him (I know I should have lost it ages ago) when he didn't turn up to my last lesson. And when I rang him to ask why, his excuse was that he was in St Albans because his other pupil had a last minute test rescheduled to then. So he could not have told me this earlier, at least a DAY before I would wake up early for my scheduled lesson?

I finally plucked up the courage to email drivejohnsons and demand a refund of the remaining lessons I had with him, and i made it abundantly clear to them that I no longer wanted anything to do with him or the company. A day after sending them that email, the driving instructor then proceeded to constantly call my phone. I listened to the voicemail he left and he stated that he was instructed by the office manager at Drivejohnsons to call me and arrange a refund directly with me! I sent a furious email back to DriveJohnsons saying and I quote "I see no reason why I should have to have- what will inevitably be- an awkward conversation with the instructor I no longer want teaching me; and explaining to him why I no longer want him to teach me. It is a rather dubious situation to put a customer in to say the least."

To which the office manager replied back to me saying that she will handle the refund herself. Well common sense prevails then.

You might be thinking why I stayed with this driving instructor if I was having all these problems with him and the company. I mainly put this down to my own stubbornness and fear that if I were to change driving instructors that I might fall further behind in my learning. Luckily though I have changed and it is the best decision I have ever made. My new instructor is amazed that I spent all that time with drivejohnsons and I still haven't done certain tricky test routes that are a must to do before the test. Seems like drivejohnsons were just making life easier for themselves and dragging out my lessons and taking my money.

Long and short of it is - AVOID AVOID AVOID AVOID! I am seriously considering reporting them to BBC's Watchdog as well!

alfieg6
1 review
0 helpful votes
May 5th, 2020

Thank you so much to drivejohnsons and my instructor Mark. From making my first booking with the office to passing my test it was easy, fun and informative. Soooo happy i can now drive and Mark was literally the best instructor i could have asked for. Would recommend anyone wanting to learn to use these guys.

emmah297
1 review
0 helpful votes
April 16th, 2020

I started learning to drive with driveJohnson's driving school at the start of the year and could not be happier with the service I received. As a key worker, I was able to continue with my driving lessons and still take my test as planned. They did everything they could to make the process as stress free as possible. My instructor was extremely thorough in cleaning the car before and after lessons and I felt very safe. Getting to work has been a nightmare recently so finally having a licence will make things a lot easier for me. Thank you driveJohnson's!

Q&A (1)

Answer:

They are legit. It's this spammy/fake review site that isn't The state of it!

By Tommy B.
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About the business

We are a driving school providing cheap driving lessons in the UK. Our driving lessons are tailored to the pupils requirements to help them pass first time.

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anthonyj705
Anthony J.

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