There’s so many things in life I love but none of them gives me the same freedom as driving does. I feel like driving is a really underrated skill until you learn how to do it and then you life is changed forever. I’ve been on the road since I was 17. The year I spent in L.A I was car-less and I can’t tell you how difficult it was to not be able to hop in the car whenever I wanted. Especially since L.A is such a huge city and you can’t really explore all of it unless you’re behind the wheel. Americans learn how to drive so much sooner than English people do so by the time I was 17 I was desperate to know how.
I do have some friends who at 21 years old still don’t know how to drive, they really want to but they just haven’t got around to it yet. Here’s some reasons why you should learn if you haven’t already & need some inspiration!
Why Learning How to Drive Was One of the Best Decisions I Ever Made
- You can visit family & friends whenever you want or need to
This is something that you don’t really think about until your friend calls you at 3am because she’s broken up with her boyfriend and you really want to get to her. You don’t have to rely on other modes of transport such as trains or busses when there’s an emergency. You can also visit extended family, aunts, cousins, grandparents whenever you want.
- Train fares are ridiculous
There’s a reason Jeremy Corbyn is so disgusted with Britain’s rail service. It’s slow and creeping privatisation means train tickets are costing more are more. It costs more for me to get the train to London from Manchester than it does to drive. I actually flew to London once for less than the train fare. Although learning how to drive requires an initial investment that is more than a train fare over the course of a few years you’ll make it back.
- You can make money driving
Uber and Lyft are incredibly popular global app’s. You can sign up to be an Uber driver and actually make back the money you spend on lessons and insurance. Not only will you get to know the streets of your city better you’ll have a part time job you have complete control over.
- As Economics goes learning how to drive is one of the best investments
Economists often talk about things in terms of whether it is a good investment or not. In simple terms a good investment is when you make an initial payout and then reap rewards from it years on so you’re left with more that you invested. Driving for me has been the best financial investment I have ever made (It would be even more so if I did #3). Driving is a lifelong skill that is transferrable to other cars and other countries roads. It’s unlikely that you’ll ever forget how to drive although you may forget about those pole classes you took. You can compare initial investment prices on your lessons at sites like BookLearnPass.
- You’ll probably look really cool
There’s no doubt Simon and Jay’s credibility skyrocketed in The Inbetweeners when he learned how to drive. Yours will too. Your friends will love the mobility and you can actually ask them for a cheeky donation towards petrol fee here and there. Again, saving you money.
- If you learn manual, you can drive it all
You’ve probably not given much thought to the fact that if you’re going to start learning how to drive you’ll be learning in a Manual or ‘Stick Shift’. Most British people learn manual, yet most Americans learn automatic. One of the benefits of learning manual in the UK is that you can drive automatic. But if you learn in an automatic you won’t be qualified to drive a Manual. This means that hiring a car in places like the USA will be so much easier for you because it’ll feel like you are driving a Go Kart.
- You’ll feel safer
I always feel safer in a car when I’m driving because I know my ability but I don’t know anyone else’s. The exception obviously comes with when my parents are driving me around because they had been doing so for 17 years without incident. However, getting driven around by your friends who have just passed is a different story. I’d rather be in my own hands.
- You can leave parties later
If you and your friends all drive you can assign a Designated Driver each time you go out and you can leave whenever you feel like it rather than having to rely on public transport. You can take turns being DD once every six weeks or so so everyone has a fair turn.
- It makes moving around so much easier
I don’t know if you’ve ever tried taking a suitcase on a train but let me tell you it’s annoying. Imagine moving to Uni across the country via train. No. Learning how to drive makes moving around the country so much easier. If you know how to drive by 18 then you’ll make moving into Halls that much easier for yourself. Plus, you can go home whenever you feel homesick.
- Freedom, sweet freedom
There’s nothing quite like texting your friend randomly asking if they want to do a weekend road trip with you. Or planning a festival for summer and knowing you can drive there whenever you want. Pack your car with more gear than you can carry on a train and go. Before I knew how to drive I thought that public transport granted me enough freedom. But that changed the day I passed and got my insurance. Driving is freedom. Trust me.
Are any of you guys learning how to drive? What other good reasons can you think of why people should learn? Let me know down below!