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Colorado Driver’s License Requirements: Is Drivers’ Ed Required? Why Is It Always Beneficial?

Whether you have a teenager who is getting ready to learn how to drive, you’re preparing to get behind the wheel yourself, or you want to look into obtaining advanced or polished driving skills, it’s likely that the question of whether or not you should seek out a Colorado driving school has crossed your mind.

In some instances, taking a state-approved drivers ed course is required, but even when that’s not the case, it’s always worth considering seeking out a reputable school.

To help illuminate when a drivers ed course is required, as well as why taking one is advantageous to any driver regardless of the necessity, the following information should shed some light:

In This Article

When Does Someone Need to Take Drivers Ed In Colorado?

In Colorado, teenagers are eligible to obtain their learners permits when they are 15 years old and their drivers licenses when they are 16 years old. When deciding on drivers ed options,  there are some state requirements to keep in mind:

  • All teens between the ages of 15 and 15 ½ must complete a 30-hour, live or on-line, state-approved drivers ed course before they are eligible to take the written test to get their learners permits.
  • When teens are between 15 ½ and 16 years of age, they must complete the 30 hours of classroom (or online) instruction, or they must take a four-hour driver awareness class.
  • After 16 years of age, no formal drivers ed program is required to obtain a learners permit, but it is strongly recommended and encouraged.
  • When it comes to obtaining an actual license, drivers under 18 must complete 50 hours of logged driving practice (10 of those being at night) with a licensed driver over 21 who has held a license for one year or longer. However, in addition to the 50 hours of driving experience with a licensed driver, a driver between the age of 16 and 16 ½ must log an additional 6 hours of behind-the-wheel training with a state-approved driving instructor. If there is not an approved driving school easily accessible within 30 miles of his/her home, 12 additional hours must be completed with a parent, guardian, or permit supervisor.

Why Can’t I Just Go to a Driver License Office to Get a Colorado Driver’s License?

To receive your Colorado driver’s license, you need to supply the DMV with a drive test completion form obtained from a driving school such as DriveSafe. Once you have given the DMV your drive test completion form, you’ll receive your Colorado driver’s license.

Do I Need to Go to a Driving School to Get a Drive Test Completion Form?

Currently, the state of Colorado is not offering behind-the-wheel driver’s license tests. A road test is required to receive a drive test completion form, which are a requirement to obtain a Colorado driver’s license. In order to pass the driving test to receive your Colorado driver license, you’ll need to go to a state-approved Colorado driving school.

Why Is a Driving School Beneficial Even When Drivers Ed Is Not Required?

There are many reasons why utilizing a driving school’s services is the best choice even when doing so is not formally required, including:

Driving Schools Offer Structured and Accommodating Schedules

When a parent, guardian, and/or other non-professional driving instructor is fully responsible for instructing a novice driver, it can be difficult to create a consistent driving schedule for the student.

Oftentimes, parents’ schedules involving work and additional responsibilities conflict with their students’ school timetables, and the result is sporadic driving lessons that only occur when parents have some free time available.

Consistency helps build both confidence and competency behind the wheel. Because the Colorado driving manual is quite lengthy and involved, teaching the rules of the road requires ongoing dedication, which is why driving schools can often offer a more steady and well-paced option for budding drivers.

Driving Instructors Have Fine-Tuned Their Curriculum and Teaching Methods

While it’s absolutely advantageous to gain driving experience with help from parents and other qualifying adults, certified driving instructors are experienced in both the subject matter as well as the most effective ways to help students understand and retain the information.  

When utilizing a driving school, parents can help their teens comprehend the driving manual and learn to drive on the road without shouldering the entire weight of responsibility. Instead, they can rest easy knowing that driving instructors who have experience and aptitude for teaching the rules of the road can provide the modern and reputation-backed drivers education their students need.

Completing Drivers Ed Programs Can Help Save On Auto Insurance

When student drivers carry learners permits, they don’t need to have their own insurance policies, but that changes when they become licensed drivers.

Naturally, finding reliable insurance that is also cost-effective is the main goal. When it comes to keeping costs down, completing state-approved drivers ed courses can actually save drivers money.

Insurance companies understand that driving schools help train skilled drivers, which contributes to their main goal of minimizing the number of collisions their customers are involved with. Many insurance providers offer discounts to drivers who have completed state-approved driving programs.

While you’ll need to ask your specific insurance carrier about any drivers ed-related discounts, some companies offer as much as 15% off of monthly premiums. Discounts frequently apply to drivers who take advanced driving courses, such as a defensive skills class.

Professional Driving Lessons Can Help Educate a Licensed Driver New to a State

Driving lessons aren’t exclusively for student drivers, either. Experienced drivers can use professional drivers ed courses to sharpen their skills in general, and they can also use them to better adapt to living in new areas.

For example, someone who mainly has experience driving in a small town in the South may find it difficult operating a vehicle in a large city that gets its fair share of snow. A driving course based in the new location can make it easy for anyone to learn how to safely operate a vehicle and smoothly adjust to his/her new surroundings.

DriveSafe Offers State-Approved Drivers Ed Courses and Driving Lessons In Colorado

DriveSafe is Colorado’s most trusted driving school, and we earned this title by providing unparalleled drivers education that works to expertly build confidence and instill safe driving habits in all of our students.

Whether you’re a parent in search of a comprehensive drivers ed program for your teen, a student driver looking to take driving lessons from one of our certified instructors, or a seasoned motorist who is interested in obtaining defensive skills to use in Colorado’s unique terrain, we can help.

Contact us today to find out which of our services will best help you learn how to drive safe for life.

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