What is Traffic School? 5 Reasons To Go

Last Updated: June 27, 2021 |
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Attending traffic school is wise. Many people think that traffic school is only for new drivers or for people who have received traffic tickets. Although traffic school is often attended by people in these categories, attending is actually an excellent choice for anyone with a driver’s license.

What is traffic school, anyway?

People who attend traffic school learn all about the rules of the road. It’s a great refresher of those rules if you have been driving for a while. You learned the traffic laws when you took your driver’s license written and road tests, but for many drivers, those tests were decades ago. Even if driving is something that you do every single day, chances are that you’ve forgotten some of the important things you learned so long ago.

Everyone can benefit from a traffic school course. If you’re not convinced yet, read on. In this informative post, you’ll learn all about traffic school. By the end, you’ll be ready to sign up for a course to become a better and safer driver.

What Is Traffic School?

You’ve likely heard the term traffic school before, but you may find yourself asking the question, “What is traffic school?”

The answer to this question is quite simple.

Traffic school is a refresher course in traffic laws and safe driving practices.

In some states, drivers who receive traffic tickets are required to attend a traffic school course to improve their driving.

Often, they will still have to pay a traffic fine if one is levied, but participation in a traffic school course will demonstrate that they are ready to get back behind the wheel after one or more violations.

Some people who receive traffic tickets are not required to attend traffic school but do so to reduce points on their driver’s license record or to reduce their insurance premiums after being ticketed.

However, in most places, you don’t need to get a traffic ticket to attend a traffic school class. Although drivers who have received one or more tickets can certainly benefit from the skill refreshment in traffic school, even drivers who have not received tickets can greatly benefit as well.

The point of traffic school is to teach drivers how to improve their driving skills, and every driver on the road can improve. Very few people, if any, are perfect drivers. Even traffic school instructors sometimes make mistakes when they drive. Therefore, it makes sense for everyone to take a traffic school course periodically to refresh their driving skills.

Who Can Go to Traffic School?

Anyone can go to traffic school.

If you attend a traffic school course in person, you’ll see that your classmates are representative of the driving population. That means that sitting alongside you in class there will be people of all ages and people from a wide variety of different backgrounds.

Traffic school is attended by teenagers, men, women, and the elderly.

Your classmates may include people who are brand new to driving. There may be people in your class who are required to attend in order to continue driving. And, you may have someone sitting beside you who has been driving for many years.

Five Reasons to Go to Traffic School

There are a number of convincing reasons to attend traffic school. One or more of the following reasons likely applies to you; traffic school is a great idea for everyone.

1. Become a Better Driver

Although it’s not necessarily the most common reason, the best reason to attend traffic school is to become a better driver.

When you are a better driver, you will benefit in a number of ways. First and foremost, you will keep you, your passengers, other drivers, and pedestrians safe. A well-practiced and well-educated driver is prepared for every driving situation that he or she may face, and as a result, he or she will experience fewer accidents on the road.

Second, better drivers save money on gasoline and car repairs. When you drive properly and defensively, your car will thank you for it. Third, a well-trained driver rarely has to worry about traffic tickets because he or she will commit fewer violations. This will also save you money in the long run.

Even if you have been driving for many years or even for decades, you can learn a lot in traffic school. It’s a great refresher course for all drivers.

2. Learn the Driving Laws of a New Place

If you’ve recently moved to a new state, or if you are new to the United States in general, you can learn a lot about local traffic laws in traffic school.

Although most driving laws are similar from place to place, there are some laws that differ. When you attend traffic school, you can be sure that you are up to date about the driving laws where you drive.

3. Reduce Your Car Insurance Rates

Many insurance companies in most states offer discounts to people who have taken the time to attend traffic school. Depending on where you live, that discount could be as much as ten percent or more. This can be a big savings for you over the course of several years.

In most cases, the discount will expire after a few years, but you can re-take a traffic school course to earn the discount again.

4. Lower Points on Your Driver’s License Record

Another great reason to take a traffic school course is to reduce the number of points on your driver’s license. As you likely know, drivers receive points on their licenses for various violations. When these points add up over time, they can lead to higher insurance premiums, suspension, or even revocation.

However, participation in a traffic school class can sometimes result in the erasure of some of these points. The number of points removed and the overall availability of this erasure varies from state to state.

5. Dismiss a Traffic TicketΒ 

In some places, participation in traffic school can result in the complete dismissal of a traffic ticket altogether. This can save drivers money on fines and on increased insurance premiums. This option is available in some states, but not others; check your local laws to determine whether or not this option is available to you where you live.

What Do You Learn in Traffic School?

When you sign up for a traffic school course, you’ll be amazed at how much you will learn. Some of the material will be familiar, but some will likely be new to you. Each class and teacher presents the material in a different way, so you will gain something new each time you take the course.

The primary purpose of traffic school is to offer a refresher course on traffic laws. First, you’ll relearn the rules of the road that you learned when you were a new driver. Your teacher and coursework will use your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles official driver’s education handbook or driver’s manual to review all aspects of driving where you live.

You’ll review things like traffic signs and signals, pavement markings on roads, right of way, speed limits, and proper turning. You will be reminded of the correct and safest ways to pass and change lanes. You can expect some discussion about driving on freeways and in construction and school zones. You’ll learn what you need to know about sharing the road with school buses, bicycles, motorcycles, and pedestrians, too.

Traffic school classes also usually include a defensive driving component as well. We are all better drivers when we drive in a defensive manner. You’ll learn helpful tips for driving in all types of weather, at night, in cities, in rural areas, and on hills and around curves. After traffic school, you’ll know all about reaction time and stopping distances, how to stay aware of your surroundings at all times, and how to handle vehicle emergencies as well.

How to Go to Traffic School

There are two main ways to attend traffic school.

Most people opt for classroom learning. This option offers a live, face-to-face learning experience with a teacher. He or she will explain all of the information that you’ll need to know; many traffic school classes require the passage of a test at the end to complete the course. You’ll watch videos about driving and your teacher will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.

You can also take an internet-based course. These courses can be completed in your free time and at your own pace. However, the experience is not as personal; if you have questions you’ll have to email them to an instructor and wait for a reply. You’ll take a computer-based skills test when you finish to get your completion certificate.

Take the Time to Learn Safe Driving Skills

Now that you know the answer to the question, “What is traffic school?” you should consider signing up for a course right away. Doing all you can to become the safest and most responsible driver that you can be is the right thing to do. You’ll save yourself money in the long run and you’ll know that you are well-equipped to keep yourself and others safe on the road. You will be a more confident driver and every time that you get behind the wheel, you’ll know that you’re prepared for anything that comes your way.

If you’re looking for local traffic schools near you or online courses you can take to become a better driver, check out the listings on our site. We can’t wait to connect you with the driver’s education that will change your life.