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Getting behind the wheel after a long break

Getting behind the wheel after a long break

For various reasons, you may sometimes take a long break from driving. You should not get behind the wheel without revising the basic rules and first familiarising yourself with any changes that have taken place in traffic and your environment.

Changes in the driving and traffic environment

It is a good idea to revise the traffic signs, whether your break from active driving has lasted for years or a few months. At the same time, you can check the traffic environment for any changes: are new modes of transport, new technologies and new routes available? Or have traffic volumes or traffic jams perhaps increased in the area where you will be travelling?

Tips for getting back behind the wheel

Acquaint yourself with the vehicle and its technology

When buying a vehicle, ask the seller at the dealership to introduce you to the car’s features and the latest car technology. It is important that you can operate and control the vehicle in all situations. Ask if the car dealership can offer training on the latest properties of cars. Read the manual carefully to help you make use of the new features. Be active and also ask more experienced motorists about new car properties.

Start by practicing driving and handling the car in quiet areas, such as an empty parking lot.

Ask a local driving school about individual lessons

If you feel you need additional instruction, a professional from a driving school can support your independent practice. Some driving schools organise limited or more extensive refresher courses where you can update your knowledge and skills. If there is something you find difficult or feel nervous about, you should enquire about tailored lessons.

Even a small amount of time spent having lessons and getting to know the vehicle may make it easier for you to get back onto the road. You can also find information on the websites of the Finnish Road Safety Council and Trafi.

Be active and ask if, or suggest that, your workplace or recreational group could organise courses on keeping your driving skills up to date.

Public transport and carpooling are good options

Public transport is an effective option in cities and urban areas. Different mobility services may be available in your area. You should also find out about different possibilities for carpooling. It is a good idea to consider your driving needs and ways of improving your skills on a case-by-case basis.

Good to remember if you have not driven for a while

  • Take time to get to know the vehicle and its controls.
  • Bring along a friend, your spouse or some other experienced driver to support you.
  • Revise the basics, seek information and practise driving at quiet times and in less busy areas.
  • Remember that driving schools do not only provide instruction for learners trying to obtain a driving licence.
  • Public transport or other mobility services also offer options.
 

 

 

 

 

Page updated 11/27/2018

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