Getting a driver’s licence is a big deal to many people, whether they are a teen driver or someone older.
The dream of having freedom to come and go without having to rely on someone else to give them a ride or public transportation appeals to many people. However, there are still a lot of responsibilities for each driver, regardless of age. The process of getting a driver’s licence begins before getting a G1 permit. Now that driving test centres in Ontario are opening again, countless teenagers will be eager to take that first or next step.
Although many people feel it’s their “right” to get their driver’s licence, it’s not. It’s a privilege. Part of making the decision about getting licensed is being mentally ready for it. As a teenager, that’s a big responsibility to take on, and as their parent, you too must be ready for it. Can you afford the cost of car insurance? Will there be a vehicle for them to drive regularly to gain experience? Will you sign them up for a driver’s training course? There are a lot of decisions to make before that first step, but once the decision has been made, it can be rather exciting.
Despite how many years you have been driving, teaching someone else the rules of the road may not be the wisest thing to do. As a licensed driver, you may not realize what you don’t know or that what you’re doing is not technically sound or legal.
Enrolling your teen in a professional driver training program is the best decision you can make. Ensuring it’s a reputable driving school with curriculum that is approved by Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation is the first step. Your goal here is to find a program that teaches not just the rules of the road, but also teaches the new driver how to make proactive decisions to avoid conflicts on the road. More advanced driver training programs may cost more, but it is worth the extra cost.
Support the new driver with their newfound knowledge. Help them practice what they have been taught. Ensure they can be a safe driver who follows the rules of the road. That may mean you too have to clean up some of your bad habits. You new driver may not know about your bad habits right away, but coming from a different pair of eyes, you’ll know soon enough.