Now I know it’s a different for all of you in the States, but in Canada we have a graduated licensing system where you have to go through three tests before you can get your full driver’s license. I recently got mine (everybody, watch out!) and I couldn’t be more happy. My examiner went really easy on me, and only made me do half of the test for some reason, but the fact is that I have my license now and I don’t have to worry about it anymore. But even with my full driver’s license, I’m considered a new driver, and there are a few things that any new driver should be doing.
Drive around in circles as much as possible.
I learned pretty quickly that driving and having a car to drive are two very different things. Regardless, when you do have a car to drive, drive it around in circles as much as you can. In the past month, I probably drove on the highway four or five times a week just to get practice. That’s important – get comfortable driving your car, learn your blind spots, and practice so much that you can drive without thinking about the specific rules and techniques on the road.
You are not special.
Yeah you, you teenage college student in a Ferrari on the highway. You are not special. Don’t forget to share the road. I know it can be annoying to slow down and let people into your lane, but you know how much it sucks when you can’t make your lane change and need to drive another block out of your way. And don’t forget – you can get into an accident too. One of my friends was on his way to Montreal and he totaled the car with four other people inside. They were all okay, but that’s enough to scare me out of my mind.
Gas and insurance just isn’t worth it sometimes.
If you go to college in a small city with a half decent transit system like I do, you really only want the car once a week to transport groceries or something. Driving around campus is a nightmare with students walking around everywhere, and you can’t drive when you’re going out at night. Insurance is really expensive for young, new drivers, and gas will add up. Consider whether or not it’s actually worth it to bring a car with you to college.
To folks with a driver’s license: what’s your dream car? Let us know in the comments!
Image courtesy of fklv (Obsolete hipster) via Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0).