You’re on your tenth attempt at the driver’s license exam and you’re starting to find it a bit cavalier on the part of the examiner to have prevented you from obtaining the precious sesame simply because you drove in a shopping center in an exclusively pedestrian area? So stop tormenting yourself because you are given the departments in which the highest pass rates are found in the exam and soon you will be able to drive on the roads of freedom with the pretty paper.
1. Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon: 80.4% success rate
Okay, it’s a bit far to go to pass the license, but 80.4% success rate is not negligible and in 2021 it was the French department with the highest success rate. It’s up to you how far you’re willing to go but know that if you manage to miss it there you really are driving like shit.
The thing to do while you’re in the area: Sympathize with the seals that roam the beaches. And avoid running over them during driving lessons.
2. Vendée: 74.8% success rate
Ah the Vendée, the city of Napoleon (La Roche-sur-Yon), the Vendée-Globe, its sandy beaches and its 74.8% driving license pass rate… What a land of prestige. You can practice driving on sand (very complicated) and reach the island of Noirmoutier by swimming (or by car but not recommended).
The thing to do while you’re in the area: Do burns at the wheel of a sand yacht on the beach of Les Sables d’Olonne, because that’s what the thugs do in the area.
3. South Corsica: 73.9% success rate
South Corsica is not only a visual paradise, it is also a historic land for passing driving licenses. It is said that it is even in these lands that the examination was invented just after the invention of the wheel in Bonifacio. A place of choice to register for driving school.
The thing to do while you’re in the area: Eat cold cuts and cheese while hiking. And enjoy the landscapes, we don’t call Corsica the island of beauty for nothing.
4. Lozère: 72.4% success rate
Formerly called Gévaudan, Lozère is not only the least populated department in France, it is also the 4th department with the highest driving license success rate. The inhabitants are such good drivers that they take the exam several times, like that, to mess around before the aperitif.
The thing to do while you’re in the area: Stroll through the Gorges du Tarn looking for traces of the Beast of Gévaudan. Without wanting to spoil you, there’s a chance that she’s been dead by now.
5. Ille-et-Vilaine: 69.9% success rate
Ille-et-Vilaine, or rather “what there is around Rennes” is a pretty little piece of land as they say. You grow apples there, you swim there on the Rance side and you learn to drive while avoiding the dog punks of Place Saint-Anne. Nothing more formative to obtain the permit, hence the 69.9% success rate and the fifth position in the ranking.
The thing to do while you’re in the area: Drink cider, the one that spins the crap. And take advantage of the free motorways limited to 110km/h to go to Bruz, stronghold of the student campuses.
6. Haute Corse: 69.2% success rate
Definitely Corsica has the wind in its sails when it comes to driving, and it’s not the inhabitants of Haute-Corse who will prove me wrong. Okay, it’s less exemplary than Southern Corsica in terms of percentage, but sixth place isn’t disgusting either.
The thing to do while you’re in the area: A lot of things we could already do in Southern Corsica. And you have to try the GR20 too, by car now that you have the license.
7. Combine: 69.1% success rate
The Allier should not be ashamed of its seventh position in the ranking and we expected no less from this beautiful department nestled in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, a region where we have tried so hard to fit everything in that it has almost called Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes-Picardie, but that was a long way off. Either way, it’s a good place to get your driving license and eat specialty cheeses, two of the finest occupations in the world.
The thing to do while you’re in the area: Ask the inhabitants if they feel rather Alliérins, Élavérens or Bourbonnais. It’s a local thing, you have to know.
8. Charente: 68.9% success rate (tied)
And here is the Charente proudly carried by its city of Cognac (or Angoulème, you choose) where people drink but drive well (I didn’t say they did both at the same time, don’t start imagining things). You will also be delighted to learn that the president of the regional council is Philippe Bouty, someone I do not know personally but I had to give you the info.
The thing to do while you’re in the area: Go see the natural park of white clay quarries and walk along the banks of the Charente river (composed of 10% cognac).
9. Lot: 68.9% success rate (ex-aequo)
The Lot, or the big Lot as it is called, is a department of Occitanie where life is good and where you can above all learn to drive well. We’re not going to say that we are trained by the best, but it’s not far, and that’s what we expect from the Lot.
The thing to do while you’re in the area: Go visit Rocamadour and marvel at this medieval city with its many souvenir shops (there is no escaping it in tourist places).
10. Two-Sevres: 68.5%
I can tell you that in this corner of Aquitaine we know how to drive, as the famous local saying goes: “in Niort we know how to drive”, without forgetting to remember that Niort is not only the fourth financial center of France but also the capital French twerking.
The thing to do while you’re in the area: Go make battlements between the ruins of the Château du Pressoir, a place where history and road safety go hand in hand.