Driving is a privilege. Its also a freedom that come with huge responsibility. Learning to drive is an exciting time and is much easier on a automatic car. Looking back I now wish the law made you learn how to drive a manual before you can drive an automatic. Why? You learn to walk before you run. Here are 3 reasons why I think everyone should learn how to drive a manual:
- Most countries still have manual cars
Being an American is to be spoiled. We are privileged in so many ways, and one of them is that there are no longer many manual cars on the road. This is nice when you are learning to drive but not whenever you decide to travel the world.
Most countries still have lots of manual cars. They are cheaper to buy and cheaper to rent when on vacation. If you can drive one, you will probably be the designated driver in your group because most rental car companies only have stick shifts. And it means you can also drive a wider range of cars (most sports or luxury cars are not automatic).
- Makes you more aware of the car and the road
You have to listen to the car which in turns means listening to the road. Are you going faster than the gear will allow? You will hear it. Are you on a hill? You will feel it. Its really strange to think that I didn’t notice any of these things before but you don’t have to when you drive an automatic. Ever since driving a stick I feel as though I know more about how cars actually work.
Manual cars also make you a safer driver. You cannot be on your phone, as one hand needs to be on the wheel while the other on the gear.
- It makes you appreciate automatic cars
Once you get back behind the wheel of a automatic you will want to praise whatever lord you believe in. Its a smoother ride, and just plain easier. My favorite thing is that you can drive different cars and not need to “get a feel for the clutch.”
I don’t agree that driving a stick is more fun at all… if anything its more work. You need to be very coordinated and be able to change to the car if you don’t drive the same one everyday which can be a challenge in and of itself. With that being said, I am now thankful that I know how to drive a stick. Most countries in Europe still have a higher majority of manual cars. This means its more expensive to rent an automatic. Having a stick in America is a sure way to know you car will not get stolen. In fact, it was hard for me to find a driving school that had manual lessons. Afterward, it was a struggle to find people who had a stick shift for me to practice before moving to France!
Tip: Read up on how driving a manual is different than an automatic before you get behind the wheel for yourself.
Do you know how to drive stick shift? How did you learn?