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Driving lessons

(79 Posts)
Chloejo Wed 11-Nov-20 08:50:31

I’ve always regretted not carrying on with my driving lessons many years ago. Now in my 60s I still would love to drive to enable me to visit friends and go out at night more. Has anyone on here learnt to drive when older ?

Galaxy Wed 11-Nov-20 08:54:24

A colleague in her late fifties is learning to drive, she loves it, if you want to give it a go then why not? It might be worth thinking about whether an automatic would more suit your needs if you want to simplify the process a little.

Humbertbear Wed 11-Nov-20 08:55:43

I think a better idea would be to calculate the cost of learning to drive, buying a car, insuring it and maintaining it and put all that money into a taxi fund. You say you want to go out in the evening, but many of our friends in their 60s and 70s say that they no longer drive at night.

Froglady Wed 11-Nov-20 08:57:38

No, I learnt very early on as my mother was an only child and her father taught her to drive and she was a driver in the 2nd world war and she made sure that all three of her girls could drive - best thing she could ever have done for us as it gave us independence.
I did have a friend who learnt to drive probably in her 50s and she was never a confident driver.
These days I don't really like night driving, although that used to be my favourite time of driving when I was a lot younger, and that is because I now wear glasses for distance and I find car headlights very offputting.
Give it a go, if it's not for you, then at least you have tried. Being that you have had driving lessons in the past it won't be totally new to you. It does mean if you pass your test that you are your own person in that you don't always have to rely on somebody else. It can open up your life to a whole new world.
Good Luck.

sodapop Wed 11-Nov-20 08:58:48

A friend of mine learned to drive in her sixties when she was widowed and passed on her second test. As Galaxy said an automatic car would make things easier, try a few lessons and see how you get on. Good luck Chloejo

Spangler Wed 11-Nov-20 09:01:46

June Evans passed her driving test at the age of 75. metro.co.uk/2018/09/11/75-year-old-gran-passes-her-driving-test-on-the-fourth-try-7933216/ You might read that Eileen Ash passed her test at 105, she did, taking the practical test whilst being filmed for TV.

The difference between the two is that June, like you, took a few lessons in the 1960's, but then gave up to raise her family. Eileen had driven all her life. She was exempt from taking a compulsory test because she was driving before the driving test was introduced.

sodapop Wed 11-Nov-20 09:01:50

Good point Humbertbear night driving does become more difficult as you get older,

MissAdventure Wed 11-Nov-20 09:30:02

My driving instructor told me of a woman in her 80s that was learning.
He always said if she could do it, so could I.

How wrong he was. blush

Lucca Wed 11-Nov-20 09:46:25

Humbertbear

I think a better idea would be to calculate the cost of learning to drive, buying a car, insuring it and maintaining it and put all that money into a taxi fund. You say you want to go out in the evening, but many of our friends in their 60s and 70s say that they no longer drive at night.

Good point particularly if you live in a town.

lovebeigecardigans1955 Wed 11-Nov-20 09:47:06

I learned around ten years ago in my mid fifties when I was in Devon where public transport is not as frequent as it is here in the East Midlands. It was the best thing I ever did. My hairdresser there said that she knew loads of ladies who became widowed and had never driven before so had a car in the garage which just sat there as their husbands had done all the driving.

There wasn't a culture of driving in my family, Dad worked for a bus company (so free or subsidised travel) and elder brother had a few lessons apparently but never got the hang of it. Younger brother was taught by his wife.

It is a skill which is really worth learning. Even if you do nothing more adventurous than the weekly shop it's still worth it. It's great to be independent.

BlueBelle Wed 11-Nov-20 09:47:44

I ve never driven and don’t want to now couldn’t afford a car anyway keeping up with punctures and stuck brakes on my cycle is bad enough 🙃
My 95 year old cousin is learning Spanish, a different thing I know, but just saying

grannyrebel7 Wed 11-Nov-20 10:00:31

I'd say go for it! Nothing ventured nothing gained. If you don't get on with it at least you can say you tried. Driving does give you so much freedom. It's one of the best things I ever did smile

Davida1968 Wed 11-Nov-20 10:02:46

My relative learned to drive in her 60s - she learned on an automatic and is still driving in her 80s. It has been Godsend for her, especially after she was widowed. Go for it!

storey49 Wed 11-Nov-20 10:03:35

I totally agree with Humbertbear, the cost of insurance, road tax, fuel and service as well as purchasing a car nowadays is very high. Check with an insurer to see what the cost of insuring a car would be, you have no years experience to get the discount. By all means learn to drive, it is another string to your bow, but check out the costs of car ownership first. Good luck smile

Missfoodlove Wed 11-Nov-20 10:03:42

Do it!!!
It will give you such freedom.
I love driving and really couldn’t imagine life without my car.
Good luck and please let us know.

Ladyleftfieldlover Wed 11-Nov-20 10:03:44

I passed my test the week of my 21st birthday and it was one of the best days of my life.

Justanotherwannabe Wed 11-Nov-20 10:03:55

My GM won a big prize on the Dublin sweepstake and announced that she was buying a car and my DD (dad?) would teach her (he wasn't keen).
One of the little problems was that she was trying so hard that shew obeyed him implicitly. "when you come to the roundabout drive straight on" - which she did.
He used to come home shaking.
She passed her test on the seventh go, but dad refused to let me drive with her. I had to invent all sorts of excuses!

Justanotherwannabe Wed 11-Nov-20 10:04:27

(she was in her sixties- my step-GM)

Kate54 Wed 11-Nov-20 10:11:36

Definitely go for it! When I passed my test (at 18) I remember that marvellous feeling of being able to go where I wanted, when I wanted and no one would know. I still enjoy that feeling even though nowadays I’d rather someone did know! On the practical side, so much easier for shopping, going to the tip etc etc

Craftycat Wed 11-Nov-20 10:12:32

Go for it! I learnt at 18 but my Mum did not learn until she was in her late 50's (However I must say she was a terrible driver!!)
I don't think it had anything to do with her age though as she always liked to have the last word & knew better than anyone else- or thought she did. She could never understand why no-one ever wanted to go anywhere with her. Luckily she lived a long way away from me so I rarely had to find excuses.

MrsThreadgoode Wed 11-Nov-20 10:19:22

I’m with the majority here, by all means book a couple of taster lessons, in an automatic, there is nothing easier than jumping into the car if you run out of milk, but also like some of the others now I’m older I hate night driving and because of an ear problem I don’t go very far away in case DH has to come and fetch me at short notice.
The Insurance goes up in leaps after you hit 65, so if you do a costing on it you can see what a taxi would cost.

How much are Driving lessons nowadays? I paid £4.00 an hour.....

nipsmum Wed 11-Nov-20 10:26:02

I learned to drive when in my early 20s. I'm so glad I did. My 2 sisters both learned in their 40s. It took them much longer and the middle sister was never a confident driver. Its not so easy as we get older and the volume and speed of traffic has changed so much. 60s is not too old, give it a go and at least you will . have the satisfaction of trying.

jenpax Wed 11-Nov-20 10:33:45

Hi
I have started driving lessons myself in my late 50’s.I learned when I was 17 but never carried on driving (too nervous) and hadn’t been in a car (as a driver)for over 35 years I am loving it and realise that I now just needed more self confidence which finally came with age!

Lollipop1 Wed 11-Nov-20 10:34:04

After 50 years of happy marriage, I still leave the house with OH shouting "where are you off to" my reply "the end of the road".... that's when I decide whether to go left or right. You're never too old for new challenges. It's freedom. It's the power to go anywhere, anytime. All those places you've wanted to visit over the years which mean a bus ride or getting someone else to take you are yours to experience when and if you want to. Get you phone out and dial now. Driving lessons mean freedom.

Jillybird Wed 11-Nov-20 10:43:41

I agree with Humbert too. Using cabs seems extortionate until you do all that adding up. Then it seems way cheaper.

I've still got a car, but after being without one for four years lost confidence and took two lessons with a professional instructor before I drove again. That said, I will not drive at night. I don't feel confident of seeing properly. (It's quite scary!) I've had my eyes tested and asked about "night lenses" but the optician says there's no such thing!

I suggest you do take a couple of lessons and see how you get on. At least, if you decide it's not for you, you will feel you have tried!