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Home / Articles / Columnists / Happy Motoring /  Things To Do Before Your Teen Gets Their Driver´s License
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Friday, July 8,2016

Things To Do Before Your Teen Gets Their Driver´s License

By Teresa Aquila  

 

Do you remember when you were of age to drive and you just couldn’t wait to take the driving test and exam? Well teens today are no different.

 

Driving is the moment of freedom, the ability to take yourself places you could never go on your own before. But what does this all mean, and what should you know before allowing them to take the wheel for their first solo trip?

1. Know your state´s motor vehicle laws. Many states now have graduated licensing, which can include restricted driving hours, limits on passengers, and stages of driving privileges based on time behind the wheel.

2. Car Insurance. Check with your insurance agent prior to your new driver hitting the road to insure you have the accurate amount of coverage. Many insurance companies offer a good student discount requiring a higher Grade Point Average. This will help reduce your monthly premium.

3. We all want to feel as if our children are safety-minded and promise to follow the laws and the rules you have set, but knowing how young adults can be persuaded, you might want to consider having some type of safety net to monitor your new driver, like Hum from Verizon or Blue Driver. It is simple and very inexpensive, they cost in the range of around $10 dollars per month. They are easy to install and plug into most cars from 1996 to current date. Many of the newer model cars today also have some form of tracking device; it can track the location, vehicle speed and report diagnostics to your phone or computer.

4. If your new driver will be taking to the road in your vehicle, then it is a good idea to have the vehicle checked over to insure it is operating at its peak performance, tune up, brakes, cooling, tires and front end. Knowing that the car is mechanically sound will give you peace of mind.

5. In today’s world, our phones are a great source for information, but if your teen knows where he/she is going, the names of major streets and roads, and neighborhood boundaries, they’ll be more confident behind the wheel and less likely to need to reach for their phone to get their bearings. Old school paper maps are great; they show the big picture as well as details.

6. Vehicles Critical Components.

Teaching your new driver preventative maintenance is crucial to the well -being of both driver and vehicle. Teach them to check the oil, transmission fluid, tires and air pressure (this information can be found on the sticker on the driver’s side door or on the tire itself), coolant and more. If you have Hum, then you will receive critical information right on your phone or computer. This way you both can review the data together.

7. Set the Ground Rules. What is their curfew? Where are they allowed to drive by themselves? When are they allowed to drive with friends? What are your expectations for grades and other responsibilities? By having your teen be part of the process, they’ll better take ownership of these rules and responsibilities. Getting them home safely is the key to these rules.

8. Being a Good Role Model helps your child to be a good driver. Most new drivers tend to use habits they have learned from their parents, so make sure to give good examples while driving for your children in order to help make them safe and responsible drivers on the road. After all, their lives do depend on it.

It is nerve-racking enough when they first learn to drive, but talking to your teen and going over a few safety tips and ground rules can make for a great driving experience. It may not stop the worry, but at least you know they are prepared to take the w h e e l . H a p p y Motoring.

 

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