5 Tips For Learning How To Drive

Learning

5 Tips for Learning How to Drive

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Learning how to drive is an exciting rite of passage. However, there are also some very real challenges and concerns that you must be aware of.

Trying to move too quickly could actually end up hamstringing your learning experience and setting you back.

Here are several tips for a better experience.

1. Find the Right Instructor

Many people choose to learn how to drive with their parents. It’s almost a rite of passage in some families.

However, consider hiring a driving instructor instead. While there’s nothing wrong with using your parents to learn, you’re ultimately going to adopt their same driving techniques and habits (many of which may not be correct).

By working with an instructor, you can be sure you’re learning the right way.

When hiring a driving instructor, be on the lookout for the right qualities.

You want someone who can communicate clearly and help you make smart, constructive decisions behind the wheel. A friendly demeanor is helpful, too.

“While driving instructors should keep it professional, they should also be friendly and help calm those nerves for the student,” Coastline Academy explains.

“The instructor should be engaging and reassuring and help ease that tension from the student. Of course, having a sense of humor can add some additional relief for the student.”

Patience goes hand-in-hand with good communication and a friendly demeanor.

Having someone who is calm and understanding goes a long way toward helping you learn in a healthy environment.

2. Get Some Insurance

If you’re learning how to drive on the road, you need insurance. More specifically, you’ll need learner driver insurance.

This provides coverage on the vehicle should something happen and you’re involved in an accident.

Without it, you could be required to cover costs out of pocket (which could mean a simple fender bender turns into a several thousand dollar mistake).

3. Choose the Right Car to Learn In

Don’t underestimate the importance of selecting the right vehicle to learn in.

As a new driver, it’s very easy to incorrectly judge the size of your vehicle and assume you have more space than you actually do.

Because of this, larger vehicles, like trucks, vans, and some SUVs, are not preferred.

“Instead, learning to drive in a medium-sized or smaller car can help a teen to gain confidence when first learning to drive,” OnlineDriversEd.com explains.

“They will also allow the teen more room when learning skills like parallel parking, switching lanes, merging, and navigating curves.”

Once you become comfortable driving a smaller car, you can move up to a bigger vehicle if you’d like. Having said that, it’s a good idea to stick with one vehicle when you’re first learning.

4. Be Patient

Don’t underestimate the importance of patience. You’re going to mess up, you’re going to make mistakes, and you will forget how to do certain things when you’re just starting out.

And guess what? That’s okay. It’s okay to not be perfect. Driving is a skill that requires time to develop. The more patience and grace you give yourself, the better.

5. Avoid Common Mistakes

There are several common mistakes that young drivers often make when learning. Here are a few of them:

  • Getting distracted. As a driver, distractions are everywhere. There are distractions inside the vehicle (like your phone, the radio dial, the navigation system, other passengers, etc.). Then there are distractions outside of the vehicle, including other cars, billboards, and scenery. Train yourself to focus on the road.
  • Relying on mirrors only. Mirrors are great, but they can’t be relied on 100 percent. Mirrors might give you the illusion that you know what’s around you, but every vehicle has blind spots. Get in the habit of physically turning to check blind spots before turning or merging lanes.
  • Failure to stop completely. It sounds silly, but a failure to completely stop at a stop sign or red light can get you in big trouble. Cops like to target intersections and will turn on their lights and pull you over if you don’t come to a complete stop.

If you can avoid making these mistakes, you’ll have a much more positive experience. It won’t always be easy, but you’ll enjoy the process.

Learn to Drive the Right Way

If you want to be a safe, skilled driver, it all starts with how you learn. Habits are developed early on.

Whether good or bad, they stick with you. So you might as well choose good habits. Let this article serve as a strong starting point and foundation.

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