The number of 17 – 22 year olds taking a driving test has fallen by 19% since 2005; a drop of more than 200,000 people, according to Newsbeat.
Much of the decrease has been put down to an increase in the cost of learning to drive and then running a car. Some prices have risen slightly, others, like car insurance, have rocketed.
The Newsbeat report refers to a recent Government survey in which almost two thirds of young people who can’t drive said they were put off by the cost of learning. But, as Newsbeat points out, there is also the rise in tax, petrol, and the cost of car insurance.
Five years ago a 35-year-old would have paid around £245 for car insurance. That has now risen to £325. Furthermore, a 17-year-old would have paid around £2,500. That is now at least £4,000, and significantly more if you are male.
Insurance companies say that it is because a young male driver is 10 times more likely to have an accident then someone over 35.
Simon Douglas, from the AA, said: “It doesn’t matter what age you learn to drive, the longer you spend behind the wheel the better you’ll be as a driver.”
According to Newsbeat, there are signs the cost of insurance is starting to fall. Figures for the last quarter show a slight drop for young drivers. And new EU legislation will mean companies won’t be able to charge different amounts based on gender.
Simon Douglas added: “It’s not good news if you’re a young lady. It’s likely their insurance costs will go up by maybe 25 or 30%.
“We don’t expect to see much reduction in the price for young men and therefore overall costs are likely to rise when this comes in.”
Click here to read the full report.