Approved Course Defensive Driving is a state certified online defensive driving course that can be used for ticket dismissal in the state of Texas. As a former driving instructor, I’m often asked about various online defensive driving courses.
Over the years running this site, I’ve reviewed many online Texas defensive driving courses, but up until now, I’ve never taken a look at ApprovedCourse.com. I recently found out Approved Course is the fastest growing defensive driving course in Texas, so I knew I had to get this course reviewed.
With so many poor quality online defensive driving courses available, I always go into a review with some cautious skepticism. So, let’s see what I found out while performing my review for Approved Course Defensive Driving.
Is Approved Course Defensive Driving Legit?
Let’s start this review off with the basics. The main thing you likely want to know is if Approved Course Defensive Driving is legit. The answer is yes, IF you live in the state of Texas. As their name implies, Approved Course is in fact approved in the state of Texas. They hold certification #CP280 which is issued by The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR).
Before signing up for any defensive driving course, you’ll want to make sure the course is actually certified in your specific state. We now know that Approved Course is certified in the state of Texas, so yes, Approved Course is a legit online defensive driving course in Texas. This course is approved for ticket dismissal in all counties and all court jurisdictions in the entire state of Texas, so rest assured this course is recognized by the courts.
My Approved Course Defensive Driving Review
Before I review any online traffic school or defensive driving course, I like to go through the course myself. I’ve reviewed well over a dozen online driving courses at this point, so it is easy for me to compare them all. As a former driving instructor, I also am able to provide a unique perspective on these courses.
Overall, I am impressed with Approved Course. The #1 issue I have with most online defensive driving courses in Texas is how outdated most of them have become. This isn’t the case with Approved Course. In fact, the course was just recently updated to include more video, and also includes a brand new 100% video option.
Video Option Side Note: The 100% video course option does cost a few bucks more, but in my opinion, it is well worth the cost. All online defensive driving courses in Texas require a course timer to be used, meaning, you can’t just blow through the entire course in 20 minutes. It really will take a full 6 hours to complete. The video option really helps to make things more interesting and entertaining. I found it to be a much better experience.
The second biggest issue I have with most online defensive driving courses in Texas is how boring most of the courses are. There is nothing worse than page after page filled with walls of text. As you go through the course, you will need to pass some quizzes before you can move forward to make sure you are retaining the information.
Approved Course makes it pretty easy by offering several different methods of delivering the material. If you go with the video option, you get 100% of the course in video format, so that’s cool. But even if you go with the standard option, videos, images, and graphics are still included to help keep things at least somewhat entertaining.
Based on my experience, my overall review of Approved Course is positive, especially when compared to many other online defensive driving courses in Texas. Based on the course content itself, I wouldn’t hesitate to sign up for this one.
However, there are a few more things to look into…
Customer Service At Approved Course
There’s a dark secret about the online defensive driving industry and that dark secret is a lack of customer service. Often times, customer service is outsourced to overseas agencies. The agents you call on the phone usually have very little power and many times can’t even issue you a refund or take care of the most basic issue.
As an example, all online defensive driving courses in Texas require what they call “identity verification”. The state wants to make sure that YOU are really the one taking the course and you’re not forcing your grandmother to take it for you. In order to accomplish this, you will randomly be asked questions only you should know (what is the last 4 of your social security number, what is the last digit on your license plate, etc.).
If you answer the question too slowly or get too many of them incorrect, you will be locked out of your course until you can contact customer support to get it reopened. This is a common experience, and yet, often times people have to wait on hold just to get a customer service agent that can’t really help them. Extremely frustrating, right?
One thing I really like about Approved Course is they actually offer quality customer support, which is a rarity in the industry. In fact, these guys are based right here in Richland Hills, Texas. If you need any assistance, you can call them at their office (800-581-3997) between the following hours:
- Sunday: 9am – 7pm
- Monday: 9am – 9pm
- Tuesday: 9am – 9pm
- Wednesday: 9am – 9pm
- Thursday: 9am – 9pm
- Friday: 9am – 7pm
- Saturday: 9am – 7pm
Alright, so now we know the course content is high quality and we know they provide customer service. Approved Course is off to a good start!
What If I Want My Money Back?
I never understand when a defensive driving course does NOT offer a money back guarantee. If a course truly does have a quality product, why would they be afraid to offer a no hassle money back guarantee? Fortunately, Approved Course does offer a money back guarantee. So, in the event you sign up and don’t like the course, just call their customer service and you can get your money back. Pretty simple.
Lowest Price Gurantee
I was a bit surprised to see this on their site, not because it is rare to see a “lowest price guarantee” for a defensive driving course, but because most of the ones that offer a lowest price guarantee are very outdated and clearly cut corners. For being such a high quality course, I actualy expected them to be on the expensive side.
The actual cost of the course varies from time to time (usually around $25), but they always guarantee to be the cheapest online defensive driving course in Texas. If you find a course offering a lower price, they will match or beat it.
…I still wasn’t convinced. This is actually a huge trick used by defensive driving schools. They offer a lowest price guarantee, but then once you’re actually in the course they sell you “upgrades”, tack on a shipping charge, add a fee here and a fee there. It’s ridiculous. I figured Approved Course was up to the same scam, but surprisingly they are actually being ethical and legitimate with their guarantee.
There are 3 different ways you can “upgrade” your account at Approved Course, but all of these upgrades are presented BEFORE you take take the course. The first upgrade is the 100% video option, the second is an expedited certificate shipping option, and the final upgrade is an option to purchase your driving record along with the course.
Other than that, the base price includes everything such as UPS Priority shipping, certificate processing, and they don’t try to nickel and dime you after completing the course. You pay for everything up front.
Alright, to recap this review so far, we now know that Approved Course offers a high quality course, provides good customer service, a money back guarantee, and they have a lowest price guarantee as well. Not too bad! Dare I say I’ve found one of the good ones?
No Final Exam!
Some online defensive driving courses require you to pass a final exam, and sometimes, you only have a couple chances to pass that final exam.
However, Approved Course does NOT have a final exam! Yes, there will be some quizzes as you go through the course, but these quizzes are super easy, open book, and you can’t fail them.
If you don’t pass, you just keep taking them until you do pass. Not having a final exam removes a lot of the stress from taking a defensive driving course.
Is Approved Course Hard?
Not at all. The thing is, taking a defensive driving course just plain sucks. Nobody likes to spend 6 hours going through a defensive driving course and I’m not here to tell you that Approved Course is a wonderful way to spend your time. But at least it’s easy, entertaining at times, and hey, you might actually learn a thing or two along the way.
Alternatives to ApprovedCourse.com
If ApprovedCourse.com doesn’t seem to be the right fit for you, there are several other options out there.
You have to be careful in choosing though, as there are also a lot of scammers out there ready to take advantage of your need to complete the course. To avoid getting scammed, you can check our article on “Avoiding Online Traffic School Scams & Paying Too Much.”
Now, here are the schools that we can recommend:
If you’re looking for a traffic course that is entertaining as much as it is informative, you can try Improv Traffic School.
This school was founded in conjunction with the renowned Improv Comedy Club, hoping to come up with a traffic school course that is, well, a lot less boring.
To do this, they have worked with comedians and driving safety specialists in designing a course curriculum that, even if intended to be funny, can help you retain all the information that you need to become a safer driver.
So far, they have already served 4 million satisfied customers, all with positive reviews about how the school helped them deal with the process of dismissing their traffic ticket, getting an insurance discount, or simply fulfilling a court order.
Now if you don’t mind the boring stuff and you prefer taking a more straightforward delivery, you may go with iDriveSafely.
This school makes its text-based content more interesting by mixing them up with video and audio clips, animations, and engaging graphics. The course is simple and the lessons are broken down into smaller units to make it easier to remember the lessons.
They also offer exceptional customer support service and implement a money-back guarantee to anyone who thinks the course is not the right one for them as long as they meet the school’s terms and conditions.
Final Thoughts About ApprovedCourse.com
With the number of very low quality online defensive driving courses I’ve gone through, it’s actually refreshing to have reviewed ApprovedCourse.com. They not only offer a quality product, but this is a locally based company in Texas that provides excellent customer support, a money back guarantee, and they will do it all for the lowest price, guaranteed.
I also like that they don’t try to scam their own customers by adding on additional fees at the end such as overpriced shipping / handling options, bogus processing fees, and other sneaky tricks that are often used to bleed more money from you.
Bottom line is Approved Course appears to be one of the few ethically run online defensive driving courses in Texas and they provide a quality product on top of that. I really have no issues with this course and it is among the best I’ve reviewed. If you need to take a defensive driving course in Texas due to a driving infraction, ApprovedCourse.com is a great option for you.
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