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How old before you let your teen drive?


Just wondering how old was your teen (how old will they be) before you let them pursu  

  1. 1. Just wondering how old was your teen (how old will they be) before you let them pursu

    • As soon as the state allows (if less than 16)
      33
    • The typical age, 16
      50
    • 17
      16
    • 18+
      20
    • Other
      15


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Just wondering how old was your teen (how old will they be) before you let them pursue their driver's license.

 

Poll to follow.

 

ETA: Oh goodness, I didn't have the entire question up there and I'm not sure how to edit a poll.

Edited by jadedone80
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Older son got his license the week he turned 16, and his younger brother will probably follow suit. (I would have been fine with them waiting till, say, 17.) I give them quite a lot of freedom, and from about age 13-14 they've been biking all over town, to most of their activities (except violin lessons!) and to their friends' houses. They like this autonomy, plus they become VERY familiar with the rules of the road (from cycling) by the time they get behind the wheel. Seems to have worked for us. Older son is a very safe & savvy driver.

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The legal age for starting to learn to drive in the UK is 17. Calvin won't turn 17 until the Christmas of his last year at school, at which point he'll be much too busy to be taking driving lessons. I suspect he won't learn to drive until the summer holidays, when he'll be 17 1/2. Or maybe the summer after his first year at university, when he'll be 18 1/2.

 

Laura

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As Laura said, the legal driving age here is 17, so my kids won't be driving until they are at least 17. Driving lessons are also very expensive here and passing the driving test is not easy, so pretty much everyone needs to get quite a few lessons. I expect ds will have to save up to pay for his own lessons, so he may not start driving for a while after he turns 17.

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I let mine get their permit and license as soon as their old enough here in NC, but they know that doesn't mean: 1) that they get a car, or 2) that they can drive any time they want. We try to make sure that they get plenty of practice with one of us in the car at 15 and 16, and then if we think they are ready, drive more alone at 17.

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I have told mine they will be allowed to get their license after they get their Eagle for Boyscouts as that is a prerequisite in our home.

 

Beyond that, they will have heavily monitored practice driving until they have demonstrated excellent driving skills, which will most likely be around 18. Driver's license doesn't mean they get to go off whenever. There are far too many teen fatal accidents from pure lack of experience that have nothing to do with drugs or alcohol.

 

Mine will also not be allowed to get into a car with a teen driver until 18.

 

I know I sound overly protective, but statistics back me up and I am just not willing to risk it.

 

Dawn

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I'd like to say 25. The thought of my oldest (even though he's responsible, thoughtful, pretty level headed guy) heading out on the road in 3.5 years makes me twitch.

 

I voted other. I don't feel compelled to let him get it at 16. I really don't see that happening. But I also know that some things I was pretty sure about in this parenting gig changed, so I know in the back of my mind it's possible.

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Georgia state laws for teen driving are complicated, IMHO, especially for a 16 year old. I'm happy my dd19 had no interest until she was 17. Students under the age of 18 must hold a learner's permit for a year and a day before they can qualify for the next level, and since she was 18 at that point, she didn't need to have all the other requirements that must be met by minors. And with a permit only, the student cannot drive alone. My ds15 has no interest either so I don't have to worry about jumping through the hoops.

 

However, I will say that I am happy the teen driving rules are so involved. When I was 16, getting a license was too easy.

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No predetermined age.

 

Driving is a developmental thing (as unnatural as the actual act may be, lol.) Some people will be capable of handling it at 14, some won't be truly ready until they're fully grown. The state doesn't know when any of my kids will be good to go. It's my job to determine when the time comes, and I can almost guarantee it will be different for each of my children.

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I put other.

 

Our official answer is 18; however, I am willing to say that individual children and circumstances may make it different. This is even more true considering we already had one licensed before that and I am more than thrilled that we did (due to circumstances that were so significant that we would have pursued a hardship license had it happened sooner).

 

Anyway, the official answer is STILL 18. My son is almost 17 and he isn't really even thinking about it. I think he may take a driver's ed course this summer.

 

And I said it with my son but feel differently now, but I'll say it about the littles anyway. I so cannot imagine these particular kids will be ready even at 18. I don't even want to think about it. But in better news, I most certainly didn't think it about my son at their age and look at him now :)

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I'm an other. Mine have gotten their permits and licenses as quickly as the state allowed at 15 and 16. Ds will be getting his permit as soon as he turns 15 also. However, they were driving before they were 15 on our property. Ds was the youngest of the 4 to learn to drive. He started driving the truck and tractor at 12 or 13. It made one of the girls angry. Eh, he was the only one big enough to drive at that age. When she was 12 she wouldn't have been able to reach the pedals and see out the windshield! And, yes, he was plenty mature at that age for the jobs we were giving him. Neither dh or I were the least bit hesitant. Of course, he was flying planes at 13 too. He isn't all that excited about the prospect of his permit. He seems to think that flying an airplane might be more difficult.:lol:

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I used to be of the opinion that later was better. But, new studies have revealed that lack of experience is the cause of accidents, not age. The link at the bottom of this post says that while there is a slight decrease in bad accidents for states that have longer waiting periods for teen drivers, it's not as large as they'd supposed. So, the bottom line seems to be drive, drive, drive with a parent. Get all the experience you can because the first months are dangerous no matter your age:

 

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/14/teenage-driving-laws-may-just-delay-deadly-crashes/

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We followed the law of our state for our dd17 and plan to for the other 3 dc.

 

Her permit was issued on her 16th bday. Then we chose to teach her driving skills, opposed to paying for a driving school ($500+). There is no benefit for us to use the driving school (as far as insurance) you are just able to get you license earlier (in 4 months opposed to 6 months).

 

Once all the driving hours were fulfilled, she could have gotton her license 6 months from the permit day. But she ended up getting it in June (the earliest would have been March).

 

By law she could not drive siblings until 6 months after getting her license, so just in the last 2 weeks has she been able to do that.

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As soon as they can. We'd also have them on tractors, four wheelers, etc. all WELL supervised of course. Since once they hit 18 they can do what they want, I want to have them "under my control" for the first while of driving. NO other kids in the car, adults ONLY, including little brother. There will be other restrictions, and yep, I'd love to make it that they can't until they are 25 (or older) but you just don't have a choice. It's a big debate around here, the state has thought of making it that they can't until they are 18 and most of us feel that's crazy, here's your freedom, here's your new license, do whatever you want! UGH!!

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As soon as the state allows, whether they are eager to start or not.

 

My view is that I want my dc to have as much driving practice as possible while they are still at home. We still control when and if they drive alone even after the state requirements are met. But at least then it's in our hands.

 

My oldest (Aspie) was not eager to start but we knew he'd be a long time deciding that himself. So we just started the process matter-of-factly, as if it were a school subject. We pushed driving practice much more often than he wanted to--however much was needed for us to feel comfortable with his driving. If we had waited until he was 'ready,' he would likely not have had much time for practice before leaving home for college.

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My dd17 can get her license when she is 18 AND can purchase a car and afford insurance. I will be providing neither for her.

 

Frankly, I don't trust her to drive. I don't think she thinks/reacts quickly enough, and I am unconvinced that she won't text and drive.

 

A recent conversation about a news item from several years ago, a teen girl who texted and drove, got in a serious car wreck, spent weeks in the hospital, and continues to text and drive confirmed my decision not to allow dd to get her license before 18/drive my car. When I mentioned that I wish I knew the girl so I could alert her insurance company to yank her insurance, dd got all up in arms about how mean I was. When I mentioned that I don't give a r@t's @ass about this girl's freedom to drive but I do give a r@t's @ss about her victims' lives, dd became stonily silent and refused to discuss it anymore. I told her plainly that with an attitude like that, she wasn't ready to drive.

 

Tara

Edited by TaraTheLiberator
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Dd15 has her permit now and is "patiently" awaiting her 16th birthday so she can get her liscense (she is VERY excited!). Dd has a good head on her shoulders, and I think she is ready for the responsiblity of driving. However, dh & I reserve the right to revoke said drivers liscense for any reason if poor choices are made relating to driving!

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If dd got her license at age 16 the premium would have been over $125 per month... if she waited until age 17 it would be around $75! (this is driving one of our older cars).

 

DD is now 21yrs and her premium is still under $100 per month and she owns her own car (slightly newer than ours)... her rates would be HIGHER now if she had gotten (no caffeine this morning and that word looks wrong...) her license at age 16! She is VERY grateful that we made her wait.

 

Same thing with second dd-- rates considerably lower because we waited an extra year.

 

Both dd's had their permits at age 16 (almost to the day!) They had one year of driving experience before they set out on their own... and both have been accident free and are very confident drivers!

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I put 17 but that's the age in NJ.

 

Kids can get a permit at 16, have to take 6 hours with a licensed driving instructor than I think it's 200 practice hours with a licensed driver over 21 years old with at least 3 years experience in the car.

 

At 17 they can get a provisional license where they can't drive after 11pm or before 5am (unless needed for a job or religious reasons), only one passenger who is not a parent, guardian or dependent is allowed (my dd cannot drive around her siblings), no use of electronics including hands-free and they are supposed to have reflective stickers on the license plate but very very few people seem to follow that one.

 

At 18 they can get a full license.

 

My dd has had her license since shortly after she turned 17. She didn't do a lot of driving due to our car situation until September of last year. Since then, due to her dance and work schedule and the joint custody with her dad, who lives 20 miles from her school, she has been driving about 200 to 300 miles a week often in rush hour traffic. She has been getting LOTS of practice. She's also one of the few in her group of friends who haven't had at least a fender bender.

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I kinda think that is up to THEM.

 

That's what dd17 thinks. She thinks she should be able to get her license now, just because she wants it. My thought is the old-fashioned kind: if you're going to drive MY vehicle and rely on ME to pay for the car payment/insurance, then I get to decide when you drive.

 

Tara

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Our state allows them to get their permits at 15, so that's when most of our children have gotten theirs (although some waited until 16). However, that means they can drive with a parent, but not alone. This way we get lots (sometimes several years) of practice in with a parent before they actually go for their driver's license and begin driving alone. Only one child got their actual driver's license at age 16, but the others all waited until 17 or older.

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Georgia state laws for teen driving are complicated, IMHO, especially for a 16 year old. I'm happy my dd19 had no interest until she was 17. Students under the age of 18 must hold a learner's permit for a year and a day before they can qualify for the next level, and since she was 18 at that point, she didn't need to have all the other requirements that must be met by minors. And with a permit only, the student cannot drive alone. My ds15 has no interest either so I don't have to worry about jumping through the hoops.

 

However, I will say that I am happy the teen driving rules are so involved. When I was 16, getting a license was too easy.

 

:iagree: I'm also in GA, and I agree that it was too easy back when I got my license. EK (17yodd) is not interested in driving, but dh & I are insisting because we're ready for her to be able to drive herself to her rehearsals and to meet friends at the mall. She has taken and passed (made an A) the "book" part of driver education--at our insistence--but has very little driving experience. Since she is 17, she wasn't technically required to take driver education, but we get a discount on our car insurance because of her having taken it.

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In our house, they get their license after they have met two criteria:

1 - met all the requirements for our state including being 16, having completed drivers' ed and have 50 hours of supervised driving experience

and

2 - have the requisite maturity, skill and attitude I feel is necessary. (Can I fall asleep or do something other than pay attention to the road when they are behind the wheel? Are their grades good enough to qualify for the good student discount on insurance?)

 

I want my kids to have lots of driving experience while living under our roof and subject to our rules before going out on their own. Part of the equation is maturity and part of it is experience. I can't hurry maturity, but I can make sure they get lots of experience.

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That's what dd17 thinks. She thinks she should be able to get her license now, just because she wants it. My thought is the old-fashioned kind: if you're going to drive MY vehicle and rely on ME to pay for the car payment/insurance, then I get to decide when you drive.

 

Tara

 

Oh, well, those are completely different questions are they not?

 

When can you get a driver's license? When you pass the requirements.

 

When can you drive MY car? When you show responsibility, ask nicely, follow my rules.

 

When will I pay for YOUR car insurance? Never?

 

My kids won't make the mistake of assuming that getting a driver's license means carte blanche access to the family resources.

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If dd got her license at age 16 the premium would have been over $125 per month... if she waited until age 17 it would be around $75! (this is driving one of our older cars).

 

DD is now 21yrs and her premium is still under $100 per month and she owns her own car (slightly newer than ours)... her rates would be HIGHER now if she had gotten (no caffeine this morning and that word looks wrong...) her license at age 16! She is VERY grateful that we made her wait.

 

Same thing with second dd-- rates considerably lower because we waited an extra year.

 

Both dd's had their permits at age 16 (almost to the day!) They had one year of driving experience before they set out on their own... and both have been accident free and are very confident drivers!

 

When she got her license determines insurance rates? That makes absolutely no sense. This is the first time I have ever heard of anything that ridiculous. It makes more sense that a new driver have higher rates than one with experience. Getting a license at an older age does not change that. Type of car and age of car make a difference. Someone who had their license with no wrecks or tickets since 16 who is now 21 is statistically a safer driver than someone who is 21 and just started driving. It makes no sense to charge a lower rate to the driver who is just beginning. In fact, I really don't believe that any insurance company would do that.

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My kids won't make the mistake of assuming that getting a driver's license means carte blanche access to the family resources.

 

My dd knows this isn't the case, but she still somehow believes that it should be. In the same way, I guess, that she believes that we should pay for a cell phone with with data plan, buy her a Wii, and allow her to have a tv in her room, just because she wants to. In dd17's version of the world, we wouldn't parent, we'd merely provide. ;)

 

Tara

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When she got her license determines insurance rates? That makes absolutely no sense. This is the first time I have ever heard of anything that ridiculous. It makes more sense that a new driver have higher rates than one with experience. Getting a license at an older age does not change that. Type of car and age of car make a difference. Someone who had their license with no wrecks or tickets since 16 who is now 21 is statistically a safer driver than someone who is 21 and just started driving. It makes no sense to charge a lower rate to the driver who is just beginning. In fact, I really don't believe that any insurance company would do that.

 

That makes sense to me. The cost for a 16 year old should be astronomical (statistically, they are an accident nightmare) if they really paid the right amount. It's better to spread the extra out over the next few years. Otherwise, you would have few customers insuring their 16 yos with you.

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Just for grins and giggles, I called our insurance company to see how much it would cost to insure dd17. She would not qualify for the "good grades" deduction but she could take a short course called "Safe Steps" or something like that and get a deduction for that.

 

It would still DOUBLE our rates.

 

I won't be paying for her insurance, and she has no job, so she certainly won't be getting insurance any time soon.

 

Tara

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My dd knows this isn't the case, but she still somehow believes that it should be. In the same way, I guess, that she believes that we should pay for a cell phone with with data plan, buy her a Wii, and allow her to have a tv in her room, just because she wants to. In dd17's version of the world, we wouldn't parent, we'd merely provide. ;)

 

Tara

 

LOL. Yeah, in which case I'd take a page from you and tell my daughter she needs to mature a bit more before getting her license. ;)

 

It is hard growing up. Reality can be a bit like a cold dip in the deep end no matter how gently you try to break it to them. Sounds like you know how to handle her!

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After having to teens go through driving school at age 16 and then NOT get in the required 50 hours practice to get their license, I figure the heck with it. We only have one car, anyway, and it is for ME to drive in , not teens to take. My college sophomore son still does not have his - he lives on campus and does not need to drive (yet.) My 18-yr-old dd would love to drive - BUT she spent every last cent she made working at Sears on clothes and pizza, etc. rather than save towards the expense of a used car, etc. - so she is out of luck. My youngest, almost 16, is saving up her money to get a car when she is older. I told her the summer before she is 18 we will see about driving school. Once they are 18 they do not need to 50 hours (although we will make sure she is a good driver before she takes off on her own in a car!) We simply can not afford the increased insurance costs, etc. and if the kid can not pay the money, they are not driving.

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I chose the first option. Our one stumbling block is moving. Here in NC they can do driver's ed at 14 1/2. But, we didn't move here until dd was over 15. They have graduated licenses and have to have their permit for a certain amount of time before they can get their license. So, she has to wait a bit before getting her full license.

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Age 18 in our family. I'm pushing for dd to get her permit now though because the point of having her wait is that she has an extended period of learning with a coach in the passenger seat. I believe firmly that the #1 cause of teen deaths behind the wheel is lack of experience. Two young people in my husbands family 10 years apart were killed in head on collisions. The first, dh's brother, was traveling long distance and should have stopped for the night, he didn't and dozed at the wheel; he was 18. The second, dh's niece, also 18 didn't take rain slick road into account and took a corner slightly too fast, crossed the line and was not able to correct fast enough to avoid the cement truck in path.

We recognize both of these are mistakes adults can and do make, but we want to do everything in our power to give our dc a LOT of practice in lots of varying situations before they "fly solo". This takes time and is not something we feel can be accomplished in just a year.

Edited by JustGin
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Georgia state laws for teen driving are complicated, IMHO, especially for a 16 year old. I'm happy my dd19 had no interest until she was 17. Students under the age of 18 must hold a learner's permit for a year and a day before they can qualify for the next level, and since she was 18 at that point, she didn't need to have all the other requirements that must be met by minors. And with a permit only, the student cannot drive alone. My ds15 has no interest either so I don't have to worry about jumping through the hoops.

 

However, I will say that I am happy the teen driving rules are so involved. When I was 16, getting a license was too easy.

 

:iagree: I'm in GA also. We allowed our ds to get his permit at 15 but he wasn't interested until he was nearly 16. He's 17 now and still on his permit.

 

I grew up in HI at a time when it was possible to get your permit and license the same day--and the legal license age was 15!

Edited by Cinder
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BUT she spent every last cent she made working at Sears on clothes and pizza, etc.

 

Sounds like my dd. There are so many things she wants ... a license, a better cell phone, a new laptop ... but she doesn't lift a finger to get there. For several summers running she has refused to do anything to get a job and then expected me to fund her summer fun. No dice. I always tell her, "If it doesn't matter enough to you to work for it, I'm certainly not going to pay for it."

 

Now before everyone decides I'm a Grinch, we did get her a Kindle Fire for Christmas. But ... it was Christmas. (She didn't even ask for one, we surprised her.) Had she just talked about wanting a Fire, I wouldn't have purchased it just because she wanted it.

 

Tara

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No predetermined age.

 

Driving is a developmental thing (as unnatural as the actual act may be, lol.) Some people will be capable of handling it at 14, some won't be truly ready until they're fully grown. The state doesn't know when any of my kids will be good to go. It's my job to determine when the time comes, and I can almost guarantee it will be different for each of my children.

 

In our house, they get their license after they have met two criteria:

1 - met all the requirements for our state including being 16, having completed drivers' ed and have 50 hours of supervised driving experience

and

2 - have the requisite maturity, skill and attitude I feel is necessary. (Can I fall asleep or do something other than pay attention to the road when they are behind the wheel? Are their grades good enough to qualify for the good student discount on insurance?)

 

I want my kids to have lots of driving experience while living under our roof and subject to our rules before going out on their own. Part of the equation is maturity and part of it is experience. I can't hurry maturity, but I can make sure they get lots of experience.

 

 

I totally agree.

 

Here 14 is the permit age, and I said no way to that.

 

 

Permit age is 14 here and I am very glad for it. That gives plenty of time for them to experience and still be able to get a license at 16 which makes it easier for them doing errands, getting to jobs, etc.

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We feel that work experience (dealing with checking accounts, bills, etc.), while one is young is extremely important...especially since we aren't going to be able to foot the bill for college (help, yes... pay for completely, nope).

 

Our children (at least the oldest 3) will be needing to take classes for math and science requirements at minimum their junior year...

 

We live about 15 miles from any part-time jobs, and the closest bus stop. We also live 30 from the CC. Unless I am going to be a taxi for work, school, swimming & other activities... the child is going to have to learn how to drive.

 

I grew up in urban areas, so not getting my license wasn't a huge deal. I lived a 10 minute walk from work, and could bike anywhere I wanted to go. In CA, I could take the county transit anywhere I needed to go, too.

 

I'm hoping that when we move to Norfolk, driving will be less of an issue, but here in the country, you have to drive.

 

They will start learning to drive with the riding mower. Oldest gets his first mowing lessons this year. After that, there is mandatory drivers ed classes, there will be driving lessons (apart from dh and I), and I expect they will do the driving to and from swim lessons and church... which means driving daily on all of the major roads in the county.

 

My only other rule is that they will NOT drive with my FIL. He used to be a race car driver... and still thinks he is.

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