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Friday, April 17, 2009

The Benefits of Attending Traffic School

If you’ve gotten a traffic ticket lately, you may be trying to decide whether or not going to traffic school is a good idea. With the economy in flux and people worried about every penny they spend, it may seem like a good idea to just pay the fine and forego the extra cost of a traffic school. But sometimes spending a little extra money can save you a lot more money in the long run. In order to help you make the decision, here are a few things that you might want to consider.

There are several consequences to getting a traffic ticket and each much be weighed when deciding whether going to traffic school may be beneficial. Some are obvious, but others are not so obvious.

Fines – This is the most obvious consequence of a traffic ticket. Fines differ from state to state and from county to county.

Points - Driving infractions usually have a point value added and, if you accumulate too many points in a set period of time, your license will be suspended.

Insurance – Insurance companies are very risk-averse and won’t hesitate to increase your insurance rates once they are informed of your traffic ticket. Many states have laws that prevent insurance companies from raising their rates for a driver who attends driving school.

Safe Driver status – Some states reward drivers with a safe driving record with a “Safe Driver” status which allows the driver to renew less frequently than those without the safe driver status.

What type of driver are you? When it comes to traffic tickets, there are basically two types of drivers:

Moderate drivers - These drivers rarely get a ticket but, due to inattention or stress, may find themselves driving a bit too fast and see those dreaded blue lights in the rear view mirror. A driver in this position probably isn’t worried about accumulating points and may decide to just live with the points, assuming that they probably won’t get enough points to risk having their license suspended. While true, these drivers could see their insurance rates go up, eventually costing them much more over the long run than the cost of a driving school. Those drivers may also lose their safe driver status, requiring them to renew their license more often.

Aggressive drivers – These drivers probably get at least two or more tickets per year. One more ticket could put this driver over the point limit, resulting in a suspended license. After completing their suspension period, these drivers may be required by the state DMV or court to attend an extended driving school before they can reinstate their license. The advanced school is much longer and costs much more than a typical driving school. While their insurance rates are probably already pretty high, attending the driving school will prevent them from going up any higher. In an already tough economy, losing your license could turn a shaky job situation into a no-job situation.

Drivers tend to develop negative driving behaviors over time and a traffic school provides a chance to re-evaluate your driving behaviors and look at them from a different perspective. They also can provide you with some valuable tips for avoiding those negative behaviors and, at the same time, update you on new driving laws that you might not be aware of.

Obviously, the best choice is to not get a ticket to begin with. Drivers should be aware that the stresses of the economy can increase your chances of getting a ticket. Stressed drivers tend to allow themselves to be distracted from the very important job of paying attention to their driving. Stress may also lead to aggressive driving behaviors that cause drivers to take more chances than they might otherwise take. Being aware of these issues and trying to put the distractions of the economy aside when you are behind the wheel will make you a safer driver, and safer drivers tend to avoid getting tickets.

Lowest Price Traffic School offers online traffic school for tickets and driver education courses required to obtain a Florida learner's permit. DMV approved and lowest price guarantee.

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