Learning to drive can be like playing sports, video games or a musical instrument— you have to practice to get better.
Practice, practice, practice. You might think you will get enough experience through driver education, but that’s not the case. North Carolina requires that parents and teens conduct 60 hours of practice driving, 10 of which must be at night, in the learner phase, and 12 hours of practice driving, 6 of which must be at night, in the intermediate phase. AAA suggests you complete at least 100 hours.
- Start with the basics — sit in the car, learn where everything is and what everything does. Take a look at the owner’s manual, too.
- Talk to your parents about what to expect, so you can avoid misunderstandings or arguments on the road when you are learning to drive.
- Start practicing with simple driving in an open parking lot or a quiet neighborhood street. As you get better at controlling the vehicle, try more challenging roadways.
- Practice in a variety of conditions.
- City streets
- Rainy weather
- Heavy traffic