But enough about parents!
Acquiring a driver’s license means you gain the freedom to get out of the house, hang out with friends, have a way to get to work and earn some money, and do other things that you love.
This period in your life is also a bit overwhelming and exhausting, too. I know I was excited as heck to get my driver’s license, but many teens are just as terrified as their parents. This isn’t without good reason, either. With more and more cars on the road every day, traffic is brutal, and an accident can occur in the blink of an eye.
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Reckless driving, carelessness, speeding, and following too closely are typical reasons for car crashes. Even if you’re the best defensive driver in the World, driving is still a dangerous activity and we are often at the mercy of others on the roadway to ensure YOUR safety.
Luckily, some things can be done to help first-timers stay safe on while they are out on the highway. Driving may never be totally safe, but the risks can be minimized by forming good driving habits early.
With this in mind, I wanted to create this updated article of the best California online driver’s ed courses for 2021.
As a former driving instructor and driver’s ed course creator, I’m one of the very few people who is “in the industry” and knows how these online driver’s ed courses work.
I have been writing online driver’s ed reviews since 2011 to help students and parents avoid the many poor quality online driver’s ed courses out there. While not much has changed since last year, I like to make sure these online driver’s ed reviews stay updated. I actually go through these online courses each year and make sure I have the most accurate recommendations possible.
Is California Driver’s Ed Better Online Or In A Classroom?
My opinion about online driver’s ed courses hasn’t changed since I first started creating these reviews. I can safely say that taking your California driver’s ed course online in 2021 is the best option.
As a former driving instructor, you may have expected me to say the opposite, but studying for a driving permit is done much better in an interactive environment. By taking a driver’s ed course online, you can go through the material at your own pace and on your own time.
Plus, instead of getting lectured at in a classroom learning about driving facts, stats, and safety concerns, you can learn those things through an interactive platform designed for increased retention rates.
Think about it this way. If you need to learn the different shapes and colors of various road signs, is it better to have a teacher talk about them all, or is it better to have an interactive game that has you properly match road signs to their meaning?
The interactiveness of these online driver’s ed courses is why I highly recommend them over classrooms. Just look at the below video from Aceable (my top recommendation) as an example. They teach you how to parallel park by using this video where you can actually look around. If you’re on a mobile device, you can just move your phone around. If you’re on a laptop or computer, you can use your mouse to look around.
Pretty cool, huh?
Reviews Of The Top 5 Best 2021 California Online Drivers Ed Courses
Every year I like to rank the best online driver’s ed courses in California and 2021 is no different. The only real change is that I added 2 more courses for you to compare.
Did you know there are literally hundreds of state-approved online driver’s ed courses in California? That’s a lot of schools to choose from, and they most certainly are not all created equally!
If you’re going to sign up for an online driver’s ed course in California this year, these are the courses I would recommend to my own friends and family.
Aceable is the cream of the crop and the number one choice for the best California online drivers ed school in 2021.
Rather than letting teens lose interest in the material, the course utilizes cutting-edge, innovative techniques such as the video I shared above to keep individuals entertained and amused while they learn. By incorporating gamified quizzes, videos, voice-overs, and interactive features into the routine, the class allows students to stay engaged.
It is state-certified and makes meeting the state’s DMV requirements a breeze.
Modern society lives in the technological era, and people don’t want to be stuck in a classroom all day, nor do they want to have access restricted to a specific device. Aceable is mobile-friendly so that the bite-sized interactive content can be displayed on smartphones, tablets, laptops, or old trustworthy desktop computers. If you plan to take this course through a mobile device, you should look no further. Aceable has the best apps and you can seamlessly switch between devices.
Even though Aceable is the most modern online driver’s ed course in California, they are still priced very competitively. Aceable is among the lowest-priced online driver’s ed schools. You could probably find a text-only driver’s ed course for a few bucks cheaper, but when I say a few bucks, I actually mean “a few bucks.” The price difference just isn’t worth it to go with a low-quality course. Aceable is as legit as it gets.
VIDEO: Aceable Online Driver’s Ed Demo Video
It was a close race for the top spot, but DriversEd.com comes in at number two on this list of best California online drivers ed courses in 2021.
The course has over 25 years of experience, and their interactive features make it possible for students not only to learn the laws, but they also to help them retain the information as well.
I really like their 3D videos, especially the interactive ones where a situation is presented and you must make a decision on what to do before the video progresses. You can log onto the site at any time and from anywhere that has internet access. That means you can study at your own pace without worrying about time restrictions. Progress saves automatically, and students are able to pick up right where they left off after logging back into the system.
Different courses are available for teen, adult, or mature drivers to obtain a permit or just earn an insurance discount.
Videos, 3-D animations, and case studies are some of the teaching methods used. These techniques are interesting, and they prevent the student’s concentration from drifting elsewhere. DriversEd.com offers standard, enhanced, and comprehensive courses that vary in price. Each one provides a different experience, and they all come with a 100-percent satisfaction guarantee.
If you’re having trouble deciding, you can check out this Aceable vs. DriversEd.com comparison.
VIDEO: DriversEd.com Demo Video
#3. Driver Ed To Go
Driver Ed To Go is a relative newcomer to this list. Like the vast majority of online driver’s ed schools in California, prior to 2019, this course was a bit outdated. The videos literally looked as if they were from the 1990s and the written course content was boring with very little to break up the monotony.
However, they’ve made some amazing improvements to this course over the past couple of years. The videos are now fresh and even interactive. For example, they have an interactive video that explains the different parts of a car, and the way it’s put together will really help most students retain the information.
The user platform was also completely overhauled making the course function much better on mobile devices. The course used to be a bit slow loading on mobile phones, but the new revamped user interface makes it very fast and easy to use.
The biggest selling point of Driver Ed To Go was always their price. This is perhaps the cheapest online driver’s ed course in California, but it is finally also modern and high quality, too. This is a fantastic option for those who want a legit online driver’s ed course that is also cheap.
If you do run into any issues, they have a good record of providing customer service and even guarantee that you’ll be satisfied with the course. If you look at their reviews online, you’ll find that they have good ratings and even an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. Driver Ed To Go is a great option in 2021.
Coming in at number four on the list of best California online drivers ed courses in 2021 is Improv Traffic School.
Even though this is listed as the #4 best driver’s ed course, it is probably my own personal favorite. Improv Traffic School puts a focus on making driver’s ed a fun learning experience through the use of humor.
The course was developed with the cooperation of the nationwide Improv Comedy Club chain. During the course, you’ll see funny stand-up comedy routines, funny sketches about driving, cartoons, animations, funny videos, and even some games.
All of this humor combined with how interactive the course is makes it easier for students to retain information than most other boring driver’s ed courses.
However, humor is different from person to person, and Improv Traffic School really does have some slapstick style comedy which not everyone is into. That’s why I listed this a bit further down the list.
The app can be downloaded to almost any device, and students can access it anytime or anywhere, just preferably not while operating a car!
Students can complete the course at their own pace, and everything takes place online without having to spend the day sitting in a stuffy classroom. The U.S.-based tech support is available 24 hours a day, and 7 days a week, just in case any issues arise.
While it is ideal for amusement, the information is based on data that is proven to reduce crashes and driving violations. Numerous resources are available to both teens and parents.
If you want to learn more about this school, check out my more detailed review of Improv Traffic School here.
VIDEO: The Type Of Humor You Can Expect From Improv Traffic School
iDriveSafely rounds up this top 5 list, but just because this is listed last doesn’t mean it’s not the best course for you.
One of the things I like most about iDriveSafely is the cast of animated characters that takes you through the entire driver’s ed process from start to finish. They each have their own personalities and the course follows a type of storyline.
I hate to admit it, but when the course was over, I was kind of disappointed to say goodbye to the characters I grew to enjoy so much! My favorite character is the car air freshener.
This course has a really good mixture of content delivery methods. I’m not a huge fan of online driver’s ed courses that are 100% video, but I also don’t like courses that are just plain text. iDriveSafely finds a nice balance between the two by offering both. Not too much text, and just enough video. They also throw some games and other interactive features in to make things even more fresh.
iDriveSafely is also one of the best online driver’s ed courses in California for parents because they offer some really nice parent guides, as well as progress reports.
If you need to find a behind-the-wheel instructor, iDriveSafely may be able to save you a few extra bucks as they offer behind-the-wheel driving instruction in many areas as well. If you sign up with them for both, you can likely save some money.
VIDEO: Demo Content From iDriveSafely
Final Thoughts About Taking Driver’s Ed Online In California
The world does not stop or slow down for anything. In fact, it continues to throw obstacles at people every single day.
Parents are working more hours than ever before to keep their family living comfortably, and students never seem to have free time on their hands because of homework, extracurricular activities, and only if they are lucky, do they find a moment for social events.
When all of these things combine, it can be nearly impossible to get into a classroom. If for nothing else, choosing one of these best California driver’s ed courses will make your life a bit less stressful.
While taking online driver’s ed may seem like a foreign concept to parents, most teens are well adapted to online learning, and driver’s ed is one of the best classes you can take through an interactive online course.
Best of luck and please drive safely!