No more waiting for the bus, no more awkwardly asking for lifts into town, or having to pay for taxis. Now you’ve got your license you have the freedom to go where you please whenever you please!
However, in your anticipation to hit the open road, it’s easy to fall into bad habits and forget some of the safety advice and driving guidelines that your instructor gave you. Of course, even the most experienced of drivers have bad habits behind the wheel, but when these go unchecked it often means that they’re more likely to be involved in an accident.
When you take proactive steps to stop yourself from falling into bad habits, you’re more likely to have a better (and safer) driving experience. Here we’ll look at the most common bad driving habits in Australia and why you should kick them to the kerb.
Driving without insurance
Not sorted out your policy yet? If you’re driving around (even just to the store or your friend’s house) without insurance coverage, then you’re breaking the law. Don’t get into the habit of bending the basic rules of driving, find yourself a policy as soon as possible – if you’re based in Australia, compare car insurance quotes with Qantas by clicking the link. Finding the right policy is easy and it only takes a few minutes!
Not using your signals/indicators
Unless humans develop mind-reading abilities, there’s very little chance that the driver behind you knows what you’re about to do. Maybe your uncle doesn’t bother indicating when he’s at a junction, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t either. Indicating lets other drivers’ know your intentions and allows them to act accordingly. They’re there to keep drivers, like you, safe!
Tailgating is something many of us do, often without realising. There should always be a 2-second gap between you and the car in-front, however, if you’re in a rush or you’re frustrated at the speed of the driver in front of you, then it’s easy to forget this simple safety rule.
Tailgating is intimidating – I’m sure you encountered some frustrated drivers whilst out on your lessons – but it’s also dangerous. If the driver ahead needs to suddenly brake and there’s barely any space between you, you’re going to go into the back of them.
Using your phone behind the wheel
Changing the song on your playlist, answering phone calls and checking that social media notification. All of these things are perfectly normal, but when you’re doing them behind the wheel, they’re illegal. Distracted driving, including using your phone behind the wheel means you’re not concentrating on the road conditions ahead. If you need to use your phone whilst in the car, pull over to a safe space first.
And finally, not being a courteous driver
Creeping up to the crossing whilst pedestrians are still using it, swerving around cyclists, waving your arms in frustration, beeping your horn to make them get out of the way. When you drive aggressively, not only do you look like a complete jerk, but you’re also putting people’s lives at risk. Always try to be a courteous driver and be patient!