Fewer Teenage Drivers

We have fewer teen drivers now than 5 years ago. The numbers of drivers aged between 16 and 19 have dropped from 184,070 in 2008 to 142,153 in 2013. This is partly because it became much harder to pass the driving test in 2012.

However there must be other reasons because this trend is happening in many other countries across the world: USA, UK, Canada, Australia, Germany, Japan and South Korea and maybe other countries as well.

Some of the suggestions to explain the drop are as follows:

There are fewer teenagers with a drop in the birth rate.
It’s hard for teenagers to find a job and you need money to drive a car. Filling up your car with petrol costs a lot these days.
Teenagers prefer to use mum or dad to drive them places. Perhaps parents are more willing to do this because of the high number of traffic accidents involving young drivers. Or maybe teenagers are more nervous about driving.
Teenagers prefer to use public transport or to ride a bike. They are more conscious of the environment and the problems with fossil fuels.
The internet has replaced the need for young people to meet. They use chat, phones, texts, and so on instead.

Listen to February 26th 2012 to hear about changes to the driving test.


  • trend (n) – fashion, a social change
  • willing (v) – want to do something
  • conscious of (adj) – they think about it more
  • replace (v) – instead of, take the place of