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Parallel parking manoeuvre tutorial

How to perform parallel parking / reverse park manoeuvre

Print the parallel park / left reverse manoeuvre PDF tutorial

During the test, the Examiner will ask you to park up on the left on more than one occasion. It will be to assure him that you can park safely and legally and in a way that isn’t going to inconvenience others. Also it may be that he is going to ask you to perform a manoeuvre. If you are going to reverse / parallel park, he will park you up on the left behind the vehicle you’re going to perform the manoeuvre on. Usually you will park behind one vehicle and not in between two.

Three key skills are needed in order to successfully complete the left reverse / reverse around a corner manoeuvre. These are:
Accuracy – ensuring you do not touch the curb or mount the pavement
Control – keeping a slow car. Think of a slow walking pace. Whilst keeping the car slow, steering must be brisk.
Observation – all round effective observation throughout the manoeuvre.


A. After the examiner has asked you to reverse / parallel park on the vehicle ahead, check your main & right mirror & blind spot & indicate to the right if necessary. Pull up alongside the vehicle not more than one metre away. Stop just ahead of him so that the front of the car lines up with the middle of the passenger door. Ensure you check your mirrors and indicate if necessary. Once stopped, apply the handbrake and select reverse gear.

B. Before moving the car take appropriate observations. If any vehicles approach during the manoeuvre, apply the left indicator, stop the car to see what their intentions are. Once clear, slowly reverse the car until the cars are level. When you see the corner of the yellow car in your rear passenger window, this will be a good indication when the vehicles are level.

Whilst reversing, make sure you look the way you are going but also don’t forget to check the road ahead for any approaching vehicles and cyclists. If there are any, stop and apply left indicator so they know your intentions and allow them to drive round. If they stop, then continue with the manoeuvre.