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  • Q: WHY SOCAL DRIVING ACADEMY?

    A: Because we believe the person giving lessons should actually be a Professional Driving Instructor. You know, someone who choose this as a vocation. Not someone who "took the job" while they wait for their "real job" to open up. Or, worse yet, they couldn't get a job at Starbucks so they applied to a Driving School. Most "driving instructors" last about 2-4 months. So you get a different instructor for each lesson. Is that really who you want sitting next to your kid headed down the 405 at 60mph?

    Q: I PASSED THE DMV WRITTEN TEST AND HAVE MY PERMIT, WHAT DO I DO NOW?

    A: Go to Sign Up Here and purchase the 6 Hour Package. This is the minimum DMV behind the wheel requirement for drivers under 17 1/2.

    Note: If you are younger than 17 1/2, only after completing the first two hour lesson and having your permit signed by our instructor, are you allowed to drive with a California licensed driver over the age of 25.

    You will then have two additional lessons spread over 2-6 months (You are required by the State of California DMV to drive an additional 50 (10 at night) hours with a licensed California driver over the age of 25 over the 6 month waiting period) that allows you to practice and improve your driving skills.

    At the end of the third lesson, you will be issued an official Completion Certificate (DL400D) which you will present to the DMV the day of your behind the wheel test.

    Q. HOW DO I SCHEDULE MY FIRST LESSON?

    A. After signing up online, we will text you to schedule your first lesson. In addition, we send a welcome email from Drive Scout to confirm lessons and also provide written feedback via a Student Report Card emailed after each lesson. Lesson 2 typically takes place 2-3 months after lesson 1 and lesson 3 takes place a few weeks before the actual test so that the information if fresh in the mind of the student. Lessons without practice in between just leads to a repeat of the former lesson. Practice, practice, practice between lessons. If you are planning on just having lessons and not getting significant practice after - you are really setting yourself up to fail the Behind the Wheel test at the DMV.

    Q: I HAVE SEEN OTHER DRIVING SCHOOLS CHARGING LESS THAN SOCAL DRIVING ACADEMY FOR TRAINING, WHY?

    A: Because they use low wage, low quality instructors. Ask your friends about the bad experiences they have had. We hear all kinds of stuff like having the student go on errands, drive through McDonalds, pick up dry cleaning, having more than one student in the car during the lesson (illegal btw), etc.

    You can get good or cheap but you can not get good AND cheap. We get many ``do over`` students from cheap schools who end up paying more than if they had used us in the first place.

    Groupon a pizza - not something where your loved ones safety is involved and life long habits will be formed. We are DMV approved, bonded, and insured.

    Q: I HAVE BEEN CALLED IN BY THE DMV FOR AN EVALUATION. CAN YOU GET ME READY?

    A: Yes! More than likely its been a while since you had to take a behind the wheel driving test, right? We know what they will expect you to be able to demonstrate during that evaluation in order to keep your independence.

    Q: WHAT ACTUALLY TAKES PLACE DURING A LESSON?

    A: Lesson one: The instructor will go over dash instruments, questions (and one trick) the DMV will ask the day of the exam. Additionally, traffic safety rules, parking, lane changes, following distance, and smooth braking are among the topics covered. At end of the first lesson the instructor will sign page 2 of the permit allowing the student to legally drive with their parents.

    Lesson two: Review of lesson one. If the student has made satisfactory progress, they will go on the freeway, practice park and reverse (will be on the test) and focus more on defensive driving techniques.

    Lesson three: A review of lessons one and two with a focus on cleaning up any rough edges or bad habits. We want to make sure the student can not only pass the DMV test, but more importantly, be a safe driver once the parent and instructor get out of the car.

    Finally, the student will be presented with an Official DMV Approved Completion Certificate (DL400D) that they will take with them the day of the test. This is a general overview. Some students progress slower and some faster. Each student will be evaluated and instructed based on their own ability. We will not rush a students lesson nor will we hold back a student with prior driving experience or exceptional ability. Each course is tailored to each student. In addition, there is normally a 5-10 min break after the first hour to allow both the student and instructor to refresh. Driving requires extreme focus and its good to just kind of shake if off for a second.

    Q: CAN WE GET EXTRA LESSONS?

    A: Yes, call or text us directly for additional information.

    Q: WHY DO YOU CHARGE $50 FOR CANCELLING A LESSON (INCLUDING NOT HAVING YOUR ORIGINAL PERMIT WITH YOU or LAST MINUTE LOCATION CHANGES) WITH LESS THAN 24 HOUR NOTICE?

    A: When your lesson is booked, a driver is scheduled and a car is reserved for that specific day, hour, and location. Both have to be paid for even if you don't show up. It is the students responsibility to have the original permit in hand in order to start the lesson (copies are not legal). Pickup or drop-off locations cannot be changed at the last minute. Lessons are scheduled in groups based on location. A change in your location at the last minute will only be made if it fits within the existing schedule. In addition, any outstanding fees owed to SoCal will have to be paid before a completion certificate can be issued or a new lesson can be scheduled.

    Q: DO YOU TEACH STUDENTS WITH ADHD, AUTISM,OR MAYBE SOMEONE WHO HAS BEEN IN AN CAR ACCIDENT AND NEEDS CONFIDENCE TO GET BACK ON THE ROAD?

    A: Yes! We specialize in teaching people who need a personalized approach. Not everyone learns the same. Or maybe you were involved in an accident and need a safe re-entry into the drivers seat again.

    We simply ask that you tell us in advance about your situation. That way we can make sure you get to most out of your lessons. Our last student had failed 6 times over 1 year (multiple schools) - he passed with us. Parents were shocked. Let us shock you too!

    Q: DO YOU ALLOW REFUNDS?

    A: No. Please make sure you are ready to commit to whatever you have signed up for. Any unused lessons are forfeited. Lessons must be completed within 6 months of the first lesson. Don't wait till the last minute to try and schedule a lesson.

    Q: DO WE COME TO YOUR OFFICE TO SIGN UP OR PAY (OR FOR ANY OTHER REASON)?

    A: No - Our office is closed to the public. We operate remotely throughout Orange County using the latest sign-up/scheduling/lesson notification software in the industry. You can sign up 24/7 on our website or call/text us directly from 8am - 8pm any day of the week.

    Q: I HAVE AN OUT OF STATE LICENSE OR I AM FROM A DIFFERENT COUNTRY, CAN YOU GET ME UP TO SPEED HERE?

    A: Yes, do you ever wonder why you are getting honked at since moving to California? Not sure who has the right of way in a parking lot? Can you cross solid lines, yellow lines, double lines? Can you go on a red light? Many states and counties have different driving norms. Keep in mind the DMV Behind the Wheel Test requires specific knowledge of the test procedure. Just because you can drive does not mean you can pass the DMV test.

    Let us teach you how to fit in locally.

    Q: WHAT CITIES DO YOU SERVE?

    A: San Clemente, Dana Point, San Juan Capistrano, Ladera Ranch, Laguna Niguel, Aliso Viejo, Laguna Hills, Laguna Beach, Corona del Mar, Mission Viejo, Lake Forest, Laguna Woods, Newport Beach, Irvine, Costa Mesa, Santa Ana, Tustin, Orange, Fountain Valley, Huntington Beach, Fullerton, Brea, Placentia, and Yorba Linda.

    Note: Cities outside of Orange County will be considered based on our availability - an additional fee will be added to cover gas and time spent driving to a location outside of OC. You can also start/end at our Tustin office to avoid an additional fee. Call us before signing up online.

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