Best Cheap Driver’s Ed Courses

Driver’s ed courses are required in most states for teen drivers. They’re usually taught in person with both a classroom element and time behind the wheel with an instructor, but there’s another option - online driver’s ed. This lets you complete the classroom part of the course online. It’s important to note that online courses only replace the classroom portion of a traditional course. You’ll still need to find a local driving school to complete your driving hours.

There are several benefits to going with an online driver’s ed course. First, they’re easier when your schedule is packed because they don’t require going to a class at a set time every week. Second, they’re also easier on your budget so you don’t have to delay getting your license while you save up the cash to pay for the course. Here are the 5 best cheap driver’s ed courses to get you started on your way to being a licensed driver.

Best Cheap Drivers Ed Courses

DriversEd logo
20+ years in business
4.5 of 5 Stars
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DriversEd.com

This is our top pick for online driver’s ed courses. It is one of the longest running online driver’s ed courses available. They once offered a home-study program with booklets and VHS tapes before online driver’s ed was possible so they know how to teach driver’s ed. Now, those videos are available online. Rather than just providing information, they’re interactive. They present a driving scenario, let you make a decision on how to handle that scenario, and then have a quiz at the end to help make sure you learned everything.

Also included are games that make it more fun to learn. There’s a lot of memorization involved in passing your driver’s test. Making a game out of learning the colors, shapes, and meanings of the vast number of road signs you might encounter makes it a lot easier to remember the information.

One of the unique features of DriversEd.com is that they offer behind-the-wheel training. They have a fleet of cars and instructors available. Most online schools are strictly about classroom time so you still have to find a local school to provide the driving instruction.

Pros and Cons

  • Offers behind-the-wheel instruction
  • Engaging interactive videos make learning easier
  • Only Texas, California, and Georgia offer behind-the-wheel instruction
Aceable logo
State-Approved Online Classes
4.3 of 5 Stars
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Aceable

Aceable has some of the cheapest rates available and they offer periodic discounts off their usual prices. Sometimes cheaper isn’t better, but Aceable has a stellar reputation with outstanding customer reviews despite its low prices. It’s also one of the newer online courses. Experience matters, but Aceable offers an engaging, modern program that utilizes multiple teaching methods others don’t embrace.

That variety in materials makes the information less dry so it’s easier to learn and remember course content. There are videos, games, quizzes, and even virtual reality options if you happen to have the equipment. You can also complete their courses on smartphones, tablets, or desktop machines so you can learn whenever and wherever you choose.

Pros and Cons

  • Includes a smartphone app for courses on the go
  • Discounts available at certain times - check their site!
  • Approved in only Texas, California, Pennsylvania, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Nevada, Ohio, and Oklahoma

Teen Driving Course

While our first two recommendations offer lots of options for how you learn, Teen Driving Course keeps it simple. All those options for viewing material are great, but some people do better without all the flash. That’s when Teen Driving Course is a better choice.

It doesn’t have games or any of the other videos and graphics, but it does offer all the information a teen needs to be able to pass their driving test. It’s mostly text based, so all students need to do is read the information. It’s more like having an online textbook, which might not be as engaging for some. Taking videos out of the mix also makes it faster to complete. If you’re rushing to get your license and don’t want to spend a lot of time or money to get your certificate, then Teen Driving Course will help you get to the DMV more quickly and affordably.

Pros and Cons

  • Quicker to complete than other online courses
  • It’s straightforward with no videos to watch
  • Approved in only California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Texas

iDriveSafely

This online driver’s ed course relies heavily on video, which may work better than more text based learning options for some students. It features animated characters that guide you through the course and keep it entertaining rather than dry so you remember what you learn.

These guys aren’t new. They have a couple of decades of experience with online driver’s ed and lots of positive reviews from customers. They also work with numerous driving schools to help you complete your driving hour requirements with a certified instructor.

Pros and Cons

  • Engaging video lessons
  • Help finding behind-the-wheel driving instruction
  • Only approved in California, Florida, Georgia, and Texas

DriversEdToGo

This is one of the cheapest options out there. It offers courses on any mobile device and the flexibility to stop the course and start again later if life gets busy. Not only can you get your learner’s permit and certificate of completion for driver’s ed, you can earn up to 2.5 high school credits depending on where you go to school

With over 20 years of experience, they’ve helped over six million students with driver’s ed. There are options to read the coursework like normal, but also to simply listen to a read-along feature that’s more like learning from a teacher in a traditional classroom.

Certificates are mailed out every day, so you’re quickly in possession of everything you need to head to the DMV and take your test. Customer service includes live operators and an online chat and if you aren’t happy with the program, they offer a money-back guarantee with a full refund.

Pros and Cons

  • Earn up to 2.5 high school credits
  • Money-back guarantee
  • Only certified in California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Texas

How do We Compare Driver’s Ed Courses?

There are lots of online driver’s ed courses available, but they’re not all created equal. We took a look at a few factors to make our picks. Simply being the cheapest option doesn’t mean it’s a good option. We made sure all of our choices are well established businesses with a long history of reviews. Those reviews are also largely positive, so you’re more likely to get the information you need to be able to pass your driver’s test on the first try.

What to Look For in a Driver’s Ed Course?

The first thing to check is that the course is accepted by your state. Not every state allows online driver’s ed classes and those that do don’t accept every course. Check to be sure that the course you’re considering can be used to fulfill the classroom requirement in your state.

The course should be clearly explained, so you know what is expected of students and what kind of support is given by instructors. Due dates for assignments, submission processes for those assignments, and the grading procedure should be easy to understand.

Also look for a class that gives you the paperwork needed to prove the class in a timely manner. This is usually a certificate that you need to present to the DMV when it’s time to be tested. Make sure this proof of completion is a part of the class and that you understand how and when you’ll get it once the course is successfully completed.

What is the Cost of a Driver’s Ed Course?

The price you’ll pay for driver’s ed depends on several factors, including where you live. Since every state has its own requirements, those states that require a bit more are going to have more expensive classes. Plan to pay anywhere from $30 to $150 for an online driver’s ed course.

Keep in mind there are options that can be added to many courses, a bit like when you’re buying a car. The more options you add to your course, the more expensive it gets. If you’re on a tight budget, just go with the basics. Consider supplementing with free online courses if you feel like you need extra help. These are usually practice tests based on your state’s exams and can give you the practice you need to pass your driving test. See Car Talk recommendations for How to Take a Free Drivers Ed Course here.

Driver’s Ed Courses for Discounts and Improved Driving Record

There are different online driver’s ed courses available for different needs. The most common driver’s ed is for new teen drivers, but there are also courses that can get you discounts on your insurance or remove points from your driving record to lower your insurance rates.

Check with your auto insurance company to see if they offer discounts for online driver’s ed courses. Many give a discount for the new teen driver courses, but there are sometimes discounts for experienced drivers who take additional classes, like defensive driving. These classes can save you money and make you a better driver.

Points on your driving record make your auto insurance more expensive. Depending on your state, you may be able to remove some of those points with driver’s ed courses. Check with your state to see if they offer point reductions if you take a course and be sure the course you choose complies with their requirements.

FAQ

What is the best driver’s ed course online?

There is no one course that’s best for everyone. The key is to find a course that’s approved for your state and that has pricing that fits within your budget.

Is online driver’s ed legit?

Yes. Online driver’s ed is legitimate, but it’s not approved in every state. Be sure to check your state’s laws before taking an online course.

How much does an online driver’s ed cost?

The cost of online driver’s ed is more affordable than in-person instruction and starts at around $30. You will still need to complete any required behind-the-wheel hours with an instructor, which will add to the total cost.

Is driver’s ed the same as traffic school?

No. Driver’s ed is generally a class that provides instruction for those seeking a license for the first time. Traffic school is for licensed drivers who are trying to eliminate insurance charges due to points on their record.

Can I get an insurance discount for taking an online driver’s ed class?

Most insurance companies do offer a discount for those who have taken driver’s ed. Check with your insurance to see what kind of discounts are offered.

Editor's note and disclaimer: Car Talk is supported by our fans, readers and listeners. When you click on some of the links on our website, we may receive referral compensation. However, you should know that the recommendations we make are based on our independent editorial review and analyses.