A new study finds that the majority of American teens delay getting a driver’s license.
The research, which was conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, surveyed 1,039 respondents ages 18-20 from across the country, and the data shows that only 44 percent of teens had obtained a driver’s license within 12 months of the minimum age for licensing in their state.
Just over half (54 percent) became licensed drivers before their 18th birthday.
AAA says the data shows a significant drop from 20 years ago, when more than two-thirds of teens were licensed by the time they turned 18.
According to AAA, the reasons for this appear to be related to the rising cost of owning a carand buying gas. Thirty-nine percent of survey respondents said they could get around without a car, and 36 percent said gas and driving were too expensive. Thirty-five percent claimed they just hadn’t gotten “around to [getting a license].”
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