driving age

What To Do When Your Child Reaches Driving Age

Is your child of driving age, wanting to get behind the wheel for the first time? Then you have come to the right place, as this guide aims to teach you exactly what steps to take when your son or daughter reaches driving age so that you can give them the independence they desire in the most safe and secure fashion. So, if you’re ready to learn more, then simply read on! 

Weigh Up The Pros & Cons Beforehand 

It’s important to weigh up the pros and cons before you let your child take an active interest in learning how to drive, as they may not be ready for driving or perhaps they simply do not need to drive due to public transport availability. It’s a good idea to write down a list of some of the major advantages and disadvantages with your son or daughter beside you, as they will have a different outlook that you need to factor into your decision. Some of the main benefits of learning to drive is the freedom and independence that your child can gain, as well as the ability to travel further for things like education, hobbies or work. It also eases them into adulthood through giving them the responsibility of maintaining and paying for their own car, as this can be extremely helpful. The drawbacks of learning how to drive at a young age focus around safety, as your son or daughter could be involved in a crash or accident on the road, or they may drive someone unsafe that they would not be able to get to without their own car. It’s also a very expensive project to undertake, as you not only have to pay for a car, but also insurance, fuel and upkeep on the vehicle. There’s a lot to think about, but seeing things in black and white can make your decision easier when you’re attempting to figure out the best route to explore. 

Take Them Out For Supervised Lessons 

If you decide that they are ready to start learning how to drive, then it may be beneficial for you to be the first one that takes them out in a vehicle. Having you as their parent by their side when they are first starting out as a driver can be so beneficial for your children, as they will feel much more confident and comfortable knowing that you are there to teach them and keep them safe. It can be intimidating to dive straight in with a professional driving instructor when you’ve never even sat in the driving seat of a car before, so having a brief introduction with someone you know and trust can really help to ensure they start with their best foot forward. There are certain rules and regulations that you need to be aware of before you take them out, as they will need their own provisional license while you will need to have maintained a full driving license for more than 3 years. You should also take steps to identify your car as one being driven by a ‘learner’ driver as this will give other cars sufficient notice to keep their distance. You can use magnetic ‘L’ plates that feature a large red L meaning learner, as this is generally the most popular way to let others know that mistakes may be made. It’s recommended that you can take your son or daughter to somewhere less occupied during their first few lessons, such as a shopping center car park or industrial center in the late evening, as this way they will not be distracted or intimidated by other drivers. Take them out for weekly lessons until they have been able to get used to the basics, as they may then wish to contact a professional instructor to teach them what they need to know for their driving tests. 

Help Them To Pay For A Car & Insurance 

It’s more than likely that your child is unable to pay for their own car or insurance, unless they have been working for some time. As a result it’s a good idea to help them pay for their car and insurance so that they can get a head start, as not having transport could affect their ability to find good employment in the future. You don’t need to go sour and buy them a brand new sports car, as this would be a total waste of money and would likely soon be smashed, crashes or damaged in some way. Instead you should find a reliable car that’s affordable and easy to fix, as it’s fair to say that almost every learner and new driver will be prone to bumps and scrapes as they get used to things. You can’t learn without making mistakes, so get a second hand or used car that doesn’t cost a fortune so that any dents or problems won’t really matter. You can choose to buy a used car from a private seller as this will allow you to haggle the price and bring it down a little, or you can visit a dealership to gain better peace of mind with the purchase you make. Insurance is another costly aspect of learning to drive that can make the process seem near impossible to achieve for youngsters, as sometimes you have to fork out more for their yearly insurance payments than you did for the actual car they are driving. This will go down over time, especially if they have no accidents or problems, but you may need to help them out to afford their first year of insurance so that they can enjoy the open road. 

Figuring out what to do when your child reaches driving age doesn’t have to be as difficult as you might initially imagine when you can utilise these excellent recommendations! Be sure to buy them a ‘well done’ gift to say congratulations when they pass their test, as some personalised DVLA number plates are sure to be the icing on the cake when they can finally hit the open road in their own car.