Author - Chelsea Martin

Learning to Drive in the UK as a Foreign Licence Holder (Part 2)

This is the second part to our mini series on learning to drive in the UK as a foreign licence holder. Watch part 1 here.

In this video, I discuss my experience with the final part of the process – the practical driving test, as well as buying my first car in the UK. The practical driving test can only be taken when you have a provisional UK licence and have passed the theory test.

The Practical Driving Test

The test itself is fairly straightforward and takes approximately 40 minutes. During this time, an examiner will ask you to do a number of tasks, such as following road signs or manoeuvres (e.g. parallel parking).

The scoring system is based on minor mistakes and major mistakes. Anyone who has either 1 major mistake during the 40 minutes or more than 15 minor mistakes will fail. Fortunately, I was able to pass on my first attempt – though I have heard of many expats and UK citizens alike take a few attempts to pass.

Want more videos about long distance dating, expat life & our time together in the UK? Subscribe on YouTube to see new videos every Sunday.

Tips for Foreign Licence Holders

The most important thing I found when preparing for the UK practical driving test was to find a driving instructor who has experience teaching foreign licence holders. The first instructor I found was not experienced and was unsure how best to help me. However, my second instructor had previously taught a number of foreign licence holders and was able to show me what I needed to know for the test, rather than starting with the basics of driving.

I also had my instructor sit in on the practical test. Though this is optional, I felt that if I did not pass my instructor would be able to see first hand what I needed to work on help me improve.

I hope these videos have helped you prepare for the UK driving tests! If you have any experience with or tips for the UK driving test, let us know in the comments below.

-Chelsea

Learning to Drive in the UK as a Foreign Licence Holder (Part 1)

As an American driving licence holder, my licence is only valid in the UK for 1 year after my arrival date. After that, foreign licence holders need to acquire a UK driving licence in order to continue to drive on UK roads.

In this video I talk about that process, from obtaining a provisional licence to the driving lessons I took & the theory test. Although the process is fairly similar for UK citizens, there were a couple of small differences. The most notable being that as a valid foreign licence holder I was able to begin lessons before my UK provisional licence arrived.

Learning to Drive for the UK Driving Test

It is important that you find a driving instructor who has experience with foreign licence holders. My first did not and struggled to find where to start. However, my second instructor had taught a number of people in my situation and was much more practiced at teaching me the differences I needed to know, rather than the basics of driving again.

Also, it is worth practising as much as possible. If you already hold a valid foreign licence, consider hiring a rental car to practice in. Or if you already have a friend/ family member in the UK willing to add you to their motor trader insurance policy – utilise this in addition to your lessons.

Want more videos about long distance dating, expat life & our time together in the UK? Subscribe on YouTube to see new videos every Sunday.

The Practical Test

In next week’s video, I’ll be discussing my experience with the practical driving test and buying my first car in the UK. The practical test was significantly different to my experience in the US, and overall stricter. However, if you find the right instructor and prepare correctly – there is nothing too difficult involved.

-Chelsea

#AskBritishHusbands: What Are Your Thoughts on American Holidays?

In this edition of #AskBritishHusbands, Chris and Ashley discuss their thoughts on American holidays that do not exist in the UK. In particular, they discuss their thoughts on Thanksgiving and 4th July – perhaps the two most famous (and well known) examples of American holidays.

4th July & Thanksgiving

While these two American holidays are not celebrated in the UK – both Chris and Ashley have experienced them to some extent during their relationships with Jude & I. It’s interesting to get an outside perspective on how these two important days in the American calendar are viewed by others.

In general, Chris and Ashley like the idea of each – the idea of additional holidays is always a nice one. However, it’s also interesting to see how these holidays compare to those celebrated in the UK, especially the similarities drawn between 4th July and Bonfire Night. While each is different, they are both viewed as the day with which fireworks are most often associated with in each country.

Want more videos about long distance dating, expat life & our time together in the UK? Subscribe on YouTube to see new videos every Sunday.

What Is ‘Ask British Husbands’?

This is the third episode in our #AskBritishHusbands series. In these videos, the British husbands of expats discuss what it’s like to date/marry a foreigner, cultural differences and more. By talking to a range of people in the UK, we hope you’ll get a great sense of what life is like and what to expect if you’re in an international relationship. To watch previous episodes, check out our full playlist here.

If you have a question you would like us to answer in a future episode, leave it in the comments below! Alternatively, send your questions to us on Twitter using our handle @ilovemybrit and using the hashtag #AskBritishHusbands.

– Chelsea

#AskExpatWives: What Do You Think About the British Accent?

As American expats living in the UK, one of the questions we hear most often from friends and family back home is, “Can you bring me back a British guy? I love their accents.” Since living in the UK however, it has become apparent that there isn’t just one quintessentially British accent. In fact, much like the US – it will very much vary depending on where you are.

Of course, there are the regional dialects – Welsh, Scottish and Irish (which can sound somewhat similar at first). But even in England, the differences are huge. When Chris & I moved from Plymouth to Lancaster (approximately 300 miles away), I had to readjust to a much more Northern way of speaking.

Understanding British Accents

In this video, Jude and I discuss how we have found adjusting to and understanding the different accents we have come across in the past year. We have found that we both have similar experiences where, very rarely, we just aren’t able to understand some pronunciations. It’s a very odd feeling, especially when speaking the same language.

But the longer we live in the UK, the more normal the accents become. Soon, it might be our friends and family in the US who sound different to us (though that is hopefully still a while away).

Want more videos about long distance dating, expat life & our time together in the UK? Subscribe on YouTube to see new videos every Sunday.

What Is ‘Ask Expat Wives’?

This is the third episode in our #AskExpatWives series. In these videos we am to answer your questions about life as an expat, living in the UK, our British husbands and more. By talking to a range of expats in the UK, we hope you’ll get a great sense of what life is like and what changes you might expect if you are considering moving to a new country. Watch all previous #AskExpatWives videos here.

If you have a question you would like us to answer in a future episode, leave it in the comments below! Alternatively, send your questions to us on Twitter using our handle @ilovemybrit and using the hashtag #AskExpatWives. We’ll also be releasing a similar series next week, #AskBritishHusbands, where our significant others give their perspective on adapting to new cultures and life after an LDR.

-Chelsea

A Brit Tries American Candies, Snacks & Drinks (#Vlog 23)

After Chelsea tried traditional British snacks, sweets and foods – we thought it was only fair that Chris try some of their American counterparts. In this video, Chris eats a selection of American snacks, candies, drinks, cereals and more. Of course, because he has been to the USA on a few occasions, we specifically looked for items that he had not yet sampled.

While these may not be the most sterotypical American items for a Brit to try, they are all genuine reactions! Among the highlights are Twinkies, teryaki flavored jerky and Hot Tamales.

New American Tastes

I think it’s fair to say that although these were all very new to Chris – there were some he enjoyed, and some he was not as keen on. It definitely looks as though we’ll need to buy more jerky in the future, as that is one snack we both enjoy. But Chris didn’t like the chocolate donuts or Twinkies as much as I thought he might.

Trying new foods is always a fun experience, and through it we get to discover new tastes and might even surprise ourselves sometimes. Just like how Chris was surprised by the sherbert filling of a gobstopper.

Want more videos about long distance dating, expat life & our time together in the UK? Subscribe on YouTube to see new videos every Wednesday & Sunday.

What’s Next?

Although we have now filmed both myself and Chris trying foods from the US and UK – we know we have only scratched the surface of what is available. If you have any ideas for other American snacks or food items you think Chris should try, leave them in the comments below.

Also, let us know if there are any other videos you would like to see us film. We’re considering a few others at the moment that include: a blind taste test (to see if we can guess which country each food item is from), trying new fast food chains and more!

-Chelsea