5 reasons why teens are not driving, and why colleges must adapt

According to the US DOT and a University of Michigan study, in 2010 only 28% of 16 year olds had their drivers license. This is down from 44% in 1980 – an incredible decline. With more millennials choosing not to drive – a generational shift in transportation is coming, and fast.

Teen Driving

Studies have shown the number of teen drivers continues to fall in the US, while the millennial generation values access to transportation – via technology – over owning a car and driver license. Thanks to new online and mobile ways to connect with friends and others – the need for freedom of a car at age 16 is no longer as important as it once was.

So why are more young people deciding not to own a car and get a drivers license?

A 2013 University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute study shows the top 5 reasons for the recent decline in young driver licensing in the US:

  1. Too busy or not enough time
  2. Owning and Maintaining a vehicle is too expensive
  3. Able to get transportation from others
  4. Prefer to bike or walk
  5. Prefer to use public transportation

With the rise of mainstream technology and communication over the last decade – an entire generation is now coming through college and early careers with a new idea of how spending money and transportation mix. Facing a rising number of students and young residents demanding new transportation options, leading colleges and cities are making it easier to live car free.
No longer does living car free mean being restricted and homebound. Be it bike sharing, car sharing, ridesharing, online classes, remote working or public transit – transportation habits are shifting everywhere.

On college campuses in particular – it is becoming easier to come to campus without buying a car and spending the $9,000+ that it costs on average on car ownership every year. Many college parking and transportation departments, student life coordinators and sustainability directors are wising up to the need for alternative transportation options for the new generation that no longer need to bring cars to campus.

By the end of this decade the need for bringing cars to campus will change and those colleges that adapt will be able to better recruit and retain their students on campus.

For more information on how RidePost helps universities stay ahead, visit RidePost.com/Universities

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