After passing the driving test, the first thing you’re eager to do is to go to the road. Increasingly, you’ll want to get out on the open road and enjoy the freedom that your newly minted driving license brings. That being said, the first trip out on the open road is a big moment and one that can be understandably daunting.
What Are the Tips to Help You Drive Alone
Here are some must-follow tips for those who wish to gain comfort driving alone for the first time.
Tell Someone You are Heading Out
For your first drive, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Before you head out for the first time, let someone else know that you are going out for your first drive. The chances are that you’ll just be driving around enjoying your newfound freedom, but it’s always a good idea for someone else to know approximately where you are going and what time you plan to be back.
Get The Right Sitting Position
Before you head out, you must be sitting comfortably. It’s not just about making sure your seat is as soft as possible; you’ll also need to be able to reach the pedals, see your mirrors and blind spots and have access to the gearshift and wheel without stretching or extending yourself in a way that might be uncomfortable in the long run.
Before pulling out, check the height of your seat and the headrest position and adjust your interior and exterior mirrors so you can see them without needing to crane your neck. Experiment on your driveway with the engine off, and ensure you can comfortably reach the pedals in different seating positions.
Invest In Some “P” Plates
You’ve no doubt been itching to get those L plates taken off, so it might seem strange investing in the vehicular equivalent of a “just married” sign. However, P plates are there for a reason. Even if you pass your test with flying colors, you are going to make a few mistakes on your first day’s driving. Having your P plates in places means that people will go a little easier on you if and when you make a mistake. The dent to your pride will be worth it if it saves you a chorus of angrily blaring horns the first time you stall, pulling away from a stop light.
Go At the Right Time
Timing is everything when it comes to driving, and the last thing you want to do is take your first nervous steps into driving on your own at rush hour, surrounded by angry, tired drivers who want to get home. On your first solo drive, pick an off-peak time and drive around the more secluded parts of your local area. It’ll mean you are less likely to run into congested traffic, and, let’s face it, you’ll have plenty of time to find out what a rush hour traffic jam is like in the future.
Don’t Dive Straight in at the Deep End
Getting your driving license opens up a whole new range of opportunities for you, but just because they are available doesn’t mean you have to try all of them right away. It’s important to pace yourself, gain confidence and get some experience under your belt. You and your friends might be excited about your new car and its freedom, but a 400-mile road trip to California isn’t the best idea during your first week of solo driving. Don’t let others pressure you into doing something you aren’t comfortable with. After all, it is your car, and, as the driver, you are responsible for its passengers.