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The Challenges Of Left-Handed Drivers

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If you are left-handed, learning to drive offers slightly different challenges for you than your right-handed peers. Of course, you also may occasionally benefit from being a left-handed driver. As you take driving lessons and then your driving test, be aware that you may have to approach things differently.

Car Extras

Although some of these items may seem unimportant, anything that takes your attention from the road can be dangerous. Since the cup holder, radio dial, and rear view mirror are all best placed for right-handed people, you have to be especially careful when reaching to adjust or retrieve something. Fortunately, some vehicles allow you to adjust the stereo and other items using buttons on the steering wheel. When you are learning, your instructor will tell you to keep your hands on the wheel no matter what. Practice making adjustments while you are stationary and don't adjust anything not necessary to your driving until you are proficient.


Studies have shown that left-handed drivers in the U.S. are much more likely to get into car accidents. Your chances of being involved in a fatal car crash are much higher than that of right-handers. Although some people have speculated that left-handed people process information differently, the truth is probably simpler than that. The world is set up for the needs of right-handed people, meaning you have to force yourself to approach things differently than you naturally would. While you are taking lessons, ask your driving instructor for tips on how to handle the unique driving challenges you face. 

Foreign Driving

If you travel to the UK, your left-handedness may pay off. Studies there show that lefties pass their driver's tests on the first try more often and do not feel that being left-handed is a drawback. Of course, they drive on the left-side of the road, and the driver's side of the car is the right instead of the left. In the UK and other countries that drive in this way, lefties might have a distinct advantage. 

When you are learning to drive and practicing for your driving test, keep in mind that as a left-handed driver you have a few more challenges than right-handers do. The driving world in the US is easier for righties, so take the time to practice adjusting mirrors and other items before hitting the road. You may have to think more about what you are doing, but you can still be a safe and effective driver. For more information, contact companies like All American Auto Driving School.