What a year 2020 has been!
We'd like to start off by saying thank you to all of our pupils who have been wonderful over the past year, and have been patient with us whilst we've waited for DVSA updates, waited for driving tests to be rearranged, and whilst we've had to prioritise pupils who've got tests coming up.
If you are in a rush and want a quick summary, here it is!
We would really appreciate it if you could continue reading though, and understand our reasons for the changes :)
From 1st February 2021, prices will be increasing to £32 per hour
From 3rd December 2020, the cancellation policy will be increased to a 48 hour notice period
From 3rd December 2020, all instructors will have Sum Up card machines in car for your use - payments can be made via bank transfer or through the Sum Up card machine
From 3rd December 2020, lesson payments must be made before the lesson starts
After lockdown #1, many instructors increased their prices to take into account additional expenses incurred for buying cleaning products and lost income. We decided to keep our prices the same throughout, and had planned to increase our prices in January 2021.
Due to lockdown #2 and with Christmas coming up, we have decided NOT to increase our prices in January. We have decided to increase them from 1st February 2021 instead. This is to give you time to get back to some sense of normality and recover from lockdown #2 and Christmas.
So, from 1st February 2021, prices will go up to:
1 hour: £32
1.5 hour: £48
2 hour: £64
Test day: £65
(1 hour lesson pre test, plus 40 min test, plus time to debrief and get you home)
Block booking, 10 hours: £300
We have done our best to keep prices as low as possible, and for as long as possible.
We are only sorry that we can't keep our prices at £30 for longer!
If you have already pre-paid for 10 hours up front, any remaining pre-pay will remain at the price you paid for it.
For example, if you paid for 10 hours pre-pay on the old price of £280 on 28th January, nothing will change until you have used up that pre-pay. Once that pre-pay has been used, you will then start paying the new price.
Due to how busy we are, we are finding that lessons that are cancelled with just 24 hours notice, does not give us enough time to contact other pupils and fill those spaces. Therefore, the instructor loses income when lessons are cancelled so soon before the lesson is due to begin.
We have decided to increase the cancellation notice period to 48 hours - you must give 48 hours notice if you would like to cancel your lesson.
For example if your lesson is on Friday 2pm, you must tell us before Wednesday 2pm, if you would like to cancel.
If you cancel a lesson with less than 48 hours notice, you will be charged for the lesson.
We have changed the Total Drive app reminder to give you 72 hours notice before your lesson, so this gives you time to tell us if you need to cancel.
So from 3rd December, you must please give us 48 hours notice to cancel.
How to pay
We told our pupils in February 2020 that all payments must be made by bank transfer due to one of our instructors being given fake bank notes.
This continues to remain - we will not accept cash.
As you all know, we use the Total Drive app for our diary and records system. Total Drive has now introduced a 'pay by app' setting. We will NOT be using this, as Total Drive are wanting to charge us instructors a lot of money per transaction made on the app - we simply cannot afford that. If we did use the Total Drive payment setting, we would have to increase our prices up to £34 per hour - we are not doing this because we are desperate to keep your prices as low as possible!
We have instead decided to buy all of our instructors Sum Up card machines. Darren already uses a Sum Up machine in car and finds it popular with pupils! Sum Up charges a lot less per transaction, and we would much rather use this.
From when we return to work on 3rd December, all of our instructors will have Sum Up card machines in car. This means you can pay by card in car, via the card machine or contactless payments. This will NOT cost you any extra - us instructors will pay for the transaction fees ourselves.
So from 3rd December, payments can be made via bank transfer, or through the card machine in car.
When to pay
We have a lot of pupils who pay after they have had the lesson, and then forget to pay. This is causing our instructors to have to chase up payments and this takes time, and we hate having to ask for payments!
So from 3rd December, we are asking that all pupils pay before their lesson starts.
If any pupil fails to pay by the end of their lesson, they will not be able to have any more lessons until that lesson is paid for. This is to reduce our instructors losing income, and to avoid you getting into debt! We'd hate for you to have lesson after lesson, without having paid, and then ending up in debt. This is to protect you!
We hate bringing in new rules and changes - so please understand that we don't want to do this anymore than you want us to!
If you have any questions or concerns, PLEASE feel free to message me (Laura) on 07982 493422, I'm more than happy to talk with you and answer any questions or concerns that you may have.
Please stay safe, looking forward to getting back to work in December :)
The DKM Team x