After months of driving lessons, our teen finally passed the Behind The Wheel Program at school and with a temporary yellow piece of paper, is now able to drive alone. We weren’t ready to let go of the reign just yet Haha and drove around with our teen a couple more weeks, as a silent passenger to monitor. Yesterday, we finally added our newest driver on our auto policy. The cost? Wow! How much is the initial costs of having a teen driver? Read more below.
The Teen Driving Process
First up, a Driver’s Permit is needed to start driving on the road. Our teen passed it in one attempt and as soon as we left the DMV, the tutorial and driving lesson began in an empty school parking lot. Best bet I was proud and happy because it meant we didn’t have to go back in line another day to take it. Be prepared for lines! Cost = $35
Secondly, add the teen driver in the auto insurance policy as having a Driver’s Permit. This should not increase your auto insurance cost but will offer coverage if needed during driving lessons.
Thirdly, there is a booklet that is given out in school that will need to be filled out every time the teen is driving. It’s located in the back pages, driving time and mileage must be recorded, as well as night time hours. A total of 45 driving hours must be completed, 15 of which must be driven at night, before a temporary driver’s license is issued after a successful completion of the Behind The Wheel Driver Education Program. Our teen’s was done during school; but, private Driver’s Ed is also available outside of school. Cost = $210
Fourthly, once the Behind The Wheel Driver Education is completed, a 7-day driving course, a temporary driver’s license will be issued, providing the teen driver has held a Driver’s Permit for at least 9 months. Ours temporary driver’s license is a yellow piece of paper. This must be carried along side the Driver’s/Learner’s Permit at all times each time the teen is driving until the actual Driver’s License is issued by the Circuit Court in about 90-120 days after completion of Driver’s Ed. So now, we wait.
Lastly, add the newest driver in the auto policy so that coverage is in full effect. We only have 2 cars between my husband and I and so our teen has to share for the time being. Because our teen’s name is not on the auto insurance cards, we requested a printout of proof of insurance for our teen to show as proof if needed. Cost = $400+/6 months! (I only had to pay for about 3 months worth, $230, before our policy renews for the another 6 months. I will be shopping around to see competitive prices.)
Eventually, we will need a 3rd car. This is a future cost we are not looking forward to. For now, our teen will share because we’ve had some major expenses this 2019.
Good to Know
- There is a curfew here in Virginia Beach for teens younger than 18 years of age. No driving between the hours of midnight and 4 am, with some exemptions.
- Under the age of 18, new teen driver’s can only drive with 1 person under the age of 21 on the first year, unless driving with a parent. After the 1st year, up to 3 people are allowed, with some restrictions.
*Violation of both can result is suspension of driver’s license.
- The use of cell phone while driving is strictly prohibited in Virginia, with some exemptions.
- Take advantage of empty school and shopping mall parking lots to acquaint your new driver how the car works and reacts to handling, especially good for parking practices too.
- The booklet the school gives has a lot of information what and how to teach your new driver. Use it.
- The more hours is spent driving, the more comfortable the teen becomes on the road. It may take some time.
- Practice U-turns and Interstate driving when traffic is least and road is more empty. This will take some nerves. Very stressful times. Haha
We welcome our newest driver but it certainly carries some extra cost. While the insurance cost varies per family/car, our experience with our teen driver carries a $475 initial cost to date, not to mention gas expense is up to. Now we know and will definitely adjust the budget accordingly. Eventually, as I have mentioned, we will need a third car because our teen is pretty busy with school and after school activities, and will eventually be catering to work schedule as well.
Be patient when giving your teen lessons. When you are stressed, the teen absorbs that and it effects driving abilities too. It’s hard to give up the reigns for sure because there’s no brakes on the passenger side. haha The more calm the environment, the better to build confidence. Not going to lie, I’m still apprehensive letting our teen go alone but it will need to happen as some point. I just have to trust.
The good part is independence, for me. Last night, our teen had friends over for a baking session. I heard one say they needed more eggs for their chiffon cake and two went out to get more ingredients. All with newly minted driver’s licenses. No more me getting out of my comfortable position on the sofa getting it for them. Haha.
Until next time.