Older drivers happy to be re-tested

Wednesday 3 February 2016

• Half of over 50s are happy to take a driving test at 70 years old • Eight out of ten under 50s think drivers should be re-tested regularly as they get older • One in three over 50s would like to take extra driving lessons • Saga is offering some customers a free driving confidence course

Older drivers happy to be re-tested

Drivers over 50 have no fear about being re-tested as half say they are happy to take a driving test when they turn 70 years old to prove they are safe to be on the road, according to research by Saga Car Insurance1.

The poll of more than 9,000 over 50s shows that six out of ten think it’s a good idea to re-test people regularly when they reach a certain age; perhaps this is because they are confident they will pass. Those under 50 years old are also in favour of re-testing older drivers (83%) and seven out of ten younger drivers claim they would be happy to take another driving test when they reach 70 years old2.

However it is not just older drivers that people think should be regularly retested.  Four out of ten over 50s think drivers should have to take a test every ten years because some people can pick up bad habits after years of driving. Re-testing people every ten years could also help drivers refresh their skills and motoring knowledge. 

Additionally, almost 70% of all drivers think people should have to take another driving test if they have been involved in a serious accident or if they’ve incurred lots penalty points on their licence.

Women aged over 50 in particular think it would be good practice to re-test drivers following a serious accident or if they have received points for speeding or driving dangerously (women 75% vs men 64%).

It seems that many drivers over 50 are seeking reassurance that they are still OK to drive; as well as being happy to be retested one in three motorists over 50 years old would welcome taking some driving lessons to help refresh their skills3.

The research also shows that around one in six over 50s have taken a break from driving for a variety of reasons. The most common reasons for taking a brief break from driving is because of illness, injury or operation (61%), they didn’t need to drive because perhaps a partner did all the driving (19%) or because they didn’t have a car (12%).

Saga understands that taking a short break from driving could affect someone’s confidence so it is offering some customers free driving lessons so they can refresh their driving skills4.

Sue Green, Head of Car Insurance at Saga, commented: “Driving is really important to our customers as it helps them keep independent and engaged with society. Older drivers are often safer than young drivers but we recognise that it’s important to refresh your skills especially if you have had a break from driving. This is why we have been offering some of our customers a free driver confidence course.

“Lots of our customers have taken advantage of the free lessons whether that’s to boost their confidence behind the wheel, help them drive in certain conditions or get used to a new road layout after moving to a new area. It’s great that so many over 50s want to refresh their skills and this type of attitude can only have a positive impact on Britain’s roads making them safer for everyone who uses them.”

Ends

Notes to editors

1Populus interviewed 9,042 people aged 50 and over online between 15th and 22nd December 2015. Results have been weighted to be representative of all GB adults. Populus is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. For more information visit www.populus.co.uk.

2Populus interviewed 2,013 people online between 8th and 10th January 2016. Results have been weighted to be representative of all GB adults.

3Populus interviewed 10,044 people aged 50 and over online between 18th and 24th November 2015. 

4One free driver confident course is available to Saga Car Insurance customers who have recently become the main driver on the policy or if they have bought a new vehicle. All driver confident courses are supplied by the AA.

About Saga Car Insurance

  • Saga Car Insurance is the leading specialist insurance provider for people aged 50 and over, offering cover tailored to their needs
  • Saga Car holds a Defaqto 5 star rating and is accessible with UK based call centres and no automated telephone menus
  • Saga Car Insurance offers uninsured driver cover, up to £500 get you home cover, £1,000 of personal belongings cover and vandalism cover
  • For more information, visit www.saga.co.uk/insurance/car-insurance or call 0800 015 0756

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