MiDAS (Minibus Driver Awareness Scheme) is an additional driving test that allows students as young as 21 years old to drive up to a 14 seat minibus, without the requirement of a D1 on their licence.


The scheme is run by the CTA (Community Transport Association), allowing volunteering and educational organisations the opportunity to access larger vehicles for group activity. MiDAS sits alongside the Section 19 permit, which must always be displayed in the minibus when hiring for LUU, confirming our membership to this scheme.




There are certain eligibility requirements to sit the MiDAS Test. There are two available, depending on the age of the drivers and length of time a UK licence has been held:


  • MPV (7-9 Seat People Carrier): 18 years old, held UK drivers licence for a minimum of 1 year
  • Minibus (up to 14 Seats/3.5 tonnes): 21 years old, held UK drivers licence for a minimum of 3 years


Drivers must have a UK drivers licence to sit the test and unfortunately previous driving licences from other countries, do not count towards the length of time a licence must be held to qualify for the test.


The benefits of this test, combined with our insurance are that you are able to drive a minibus at the age of 21 years, without a D1 on your licence (a D1 test can cost over £600). This is in place alongside Section 19 permits, which are displayed in the minibus window for those that drive voluntarily for organisations. When collecting a minibus, please ensure the hire company place the Section 19 permit in the window.


The certification is valid for 4 years.


For those that passed their drivers test before 1st January 1997, additional entitlements are in place on these licences. This allows individuals to tow trailers (BE) and drive minibuses (D1). For the Union’s Motor Insurance we require individuals to have a MiDAS qualification, but for those with a D1, you can go directly to a hire company and hire a minibus up to 17 seats. You must arrange this directly with the hire company, hiring the vehicle on their insurance and coordinating payment. You must not mention ‘LUU’ or they will send you back to the Union, and without a MiDAS, we won’t be able to process this booking.



Theory Test

This Test lasts 2½ hours as the session begins with a PowerPoint Presentation that you answer multi-choice questions on; no preparation is required. The tests usually take place at 5.00pm on Tuesday evenings, twice a semester. If you know you will arriving be late, please notify us. If we are aware of delays we can wait up to 10/15 minutes. This does not apply to your practical test.


We ask that you sit your MiDAS Theory Test before your MiDAS Practical Test. We can be flexible with this but until both parts are passed you are unable to drive the larger vehicles.



Practical Test

This test lasts 50 minutes and is an awareness driving session, where your driving ability is reviewed driving a larger vehicle. These take place on a Saturday from 9.00am – 3.00pm. If you require a set time (morning or afternoon) we will do our best to be flexible with your request, but can’t always guarantee a specific slot as the tests are very popular.


Unfortunately no prior driving experience or practice will be offered. Anyone who fails to attend with the Theory or Practice test the group will be charged for the test.




Should you fail one part of the MiDAS Test, you will be charged for a resit for that specific test. For Practical Tests we will do our best to reschedule, which might be a Saturday session or a mid-week afternoon session (around 4.00pm), dependent on the instructor’s availability.




Should you wish to upgrade your MPV test to a Minibus test once you are eligible, you will only be charged for the practical test and vehicle hire, as the Theory Test is the same for both MPV and Minibus. The MiDAS qualification is valid for 4 years, so if you have held your MPV certificate for 2 years, your upgraded minibus certificate will only be valid for 2 years before you have to resit the whole course.


Those who already qualify to take the minibus test will be able to drive minibuses and MPVs once passed.




The cost for the MiDAS test, which includes your Theory and Practical test, as well as the vehicle hire costs (which is shared between all those sitting the test), is £60.




If you are interested in sitting the MiDAS Test, please notify the Student Activities Admin Team (activities@leeds.ac.uk). We need the following information:


  • Name
  • Group
  • Group Account Number
  • Vehicle
  • Email
  • Mobile Number
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