10 Tips to become a good driver

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Manny De Los Reyes
Manny De Los Reyes
Manny de los Reyes, motoring editor of wheels.ph as well as its print edition, has been writing about cars since 1995. His life has been deeply intertwined with cars, having cleaned and maintained the family cars as a teenager, operating a paint shop and entering national car shows in college, before joining Nissan after graduation. He handled car brands as a copywriter afterwards. Today, when he's not testing or writing about cars or attending motoring events, he is home reading novels or playing with his shih tzu.

The journey to being a good driver does not end with getting your license. In fact, we believe it’s just the beginning. Like Spider Man’s Uncle Ben said, “With great power comes great responsibility!”

So we go back to basics by compiling top tips towards becoming a better driver. We think even longtime drivers can learn a thing or two because often, the simplest things are the most overlooked.

Tip Number 1

Remember the often-repeated acronym. BLOWBAGS. Check your: Battery, Lights, Oil, Water, Brakes, Air, Gas, and S is for self. If you’re tired, intoxicated, or feel sick, never get behind the wheel!

Tip Number 2

Always buckle up – even during short trips. Remember that even if you’re the safest of drivers, the same unfortunately cannot be said for everyone else. Seatbelts save lives. It’s that simple.

Tip Number 3

Are you guilty of changing lanes or cutting into traffic without using your turn signals? Well, know that your chances of getting into an accident increase significantly if you don’t flick them on.

Tip Number 4

Never text and drive. Aside from being against the law, studies show that texting while behind the wheel makes you 23 times more likely to get into an accident.

Tip Number 5

We know it’s a great boredom killer, but don’t crank up the music too loudly that you can’t hear what’s going on outside your vehicle. It reduces your ability to react to situations such as when an ambulance is coming up quickly behind you.

Tip Number 6

Respect pedestrians. When approaching a crosswalk and people are getting ready to move, slow down and let them cross. Drive slowly in places with lots of people – particularly near public markets, churches, and schools.

Tip Number 7

Are you an excessive honker? That’s just irritating, and adds to the stress of everyone around you. Blow your horn only if necessary – and never for a loooooong time!

Tip Number 8

Don’t be litterbug! It’s always rude to throw your trash out the car window. Keep it in your vehicle to dispose of later when there’s a trash bin.

Tip Number 9

Never tailgate. That’s just asking for trouble. When the vehicle in front of you brakes hard, guess what’s going to happen next?

Tip Number 10

Finally, if you have an itch to speed, do it safely — on the track. A few seconds of devil-may-care driving on public roads can indeed land you in hell — or behind bars.

There you have it—a quick guide towards being a safer and more responsible driver. We know there are more tips out there, so we welcome your suggestions!

It’s always helpful to drive defensively and conscientiously. Remember, at the end of the day, it’s always better to arrive late than not to arrive at all.

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