Driving is widely considered one of life’s essential skills. This mainly stems from the need to move around and to get to destinations much faster, easier, and more conveniently. Many people rely on driving to commute to work and/or school, run errands, do business, and so on.
However, driving is much more than just a practical skill. It can also be a fun and relaxing hobby. If done right, you can derive a lot of pleasure and joy from this lifelong skill.
For many people, there is no greater source of happiness than getting behind the wheel and taking on the open road, windows down, with their favorite music playing in the background.
If this is you or if you enjoy the general experience of driving and are interested in turning driving into a hobby, then this article is for you.
What is Driving?
Everyone has a basic idea of what driving is and what it entails. Essentially, it is the act and process of operating, controlling, and moving a land-based vehicle such as a car, truck, or bus. However, it is important to keep in mind that driving is a privilege in almost all countries.
One has to meet a certain set of requirements in order to be legally allowed to drive on any public road. Most notably, you have to be of a particular age, must qualify for a driver’s license, and are expected to learn and adhere to the established road and traffic laws of the place you are driving in.
But once all these factors are out of the way and you’ve mastered the skill of driving, you get to open up many new horizons that were previously out of bounds.
You get to travel more often, visit beautiful sights, meet and spend time with the family more often, and even socialize with people with similar interests.
Can Driving Be a Hobby?
Yes, driving can be a fun and exciting hobby, especially when it is done right. It should come as no surprise though that there are people who view driving as a chore or hassle.
This is particularly so when you consider all the rules involved, the stress of maneuvering through heavy traffic, and the overall costs of driving.
However, there are many other people who get a lot of pleasure and satisfaction from the experience of being behind the wheel, taking in different sights, and the general feel of the car they are driving.
These people don’t just drive to get from point A to point B; they do it for the fun of it. They will welcome and make the most of any opportunity to get in the car and drive because of the joy and benefits it offers them.
What Types of People Like Driving?
There are different types of people who may enjoy driving as a hobby, with the first and most obvious being people who are passionate about cars or car enthusiasts.
If you love everything about cars, know more about cars than the average person, and love attending car shows and car meet-ups, then you most probably love driving and experiencing different cars, and it may already be a hobby for you.
Another group of people who may potentially enjoy this hobby is people who love traveling and exploring new places. If you regularly find yourself taking long scenic drives at any opportunity, then you may need to turn your driving into a hobby.
If you love volunteering your driving services every time an opportunity arises, for example, helping someone get somewhere or pick up something, then it may be a sign that you love being behind the wheel, and you’ll enjoy driving as a hobby.
Benefits: Why Driving Could Be A Good Hobby for You
There are many reasons why driving could potentially be a good hobby for you.
Driving offers a great sense of freedom and independence
In fact, cars have long been a symbol of personal freedom. Once you learn how to drive and have a car, you have the freedom to go anywhere you want and at any time without relying on another person. This can significantly help to make your life much happier and more satisfying.
Driving gives you the opportunity to travel more and explore new places
For some people, there is no better way to enjoy a beautiful day than to go on a long drive sightseeing and picnicking. By choosing driving as a hobby, you get to learn more about and experience the world around you.
Driving is beneficial for mental health
First of all, it offers you some much-needed “me” time, which promotes personal reflection and thinking associated with problem-solving and meditation. This is according to Professor Lynne Pearce of Lancaster University in her book, “Drivetime.”
Secondly, driving, especially through beautiful scenery, can help you to relax and completely take your mind off stressful thoughts. This not only helps to boost your mood but also lowers your stress levels.
Researchers at Columbia University, New York, found that driving can not only help to boost cognitive function but it can also help to delay the aging process and avoid conditions like dementia.
Are There Drawbacks to Choosing Driving as a Hobby?
As with other hobbies, driving has its downsides. One of the biggest complaints associated with driving as a hobby is the many costs involved.
You have to factor in the cost of acquiring a car, car insurance payments, fuel costs, as well as maintenance and repair costs. All these costs can prove to be very expensive in the long run.
Secondly, driving is often considered bad for your health as it contributes to a sedentary lifestyle.
Thirdly, it’ll be irresponsible not to mention the many risks that drivers face on the road. From bad drivers, road construction, to bad weather, there is always a lingering risk of a road accident.
Fourthly, driving, especially gas-fuelled vehicles, significantly contributes to environmental pollution.
How to Start Driving as a Hobby
Before taking up driving as a hobby, you’ll need to ensure that you are well prepared for this type of hobby. Finding scenic and convenient routes to maximize your driving experience will be among your top concerns.
Here are some more details about choosing driving as a hobby.
1. An Ideal Car
It goes without saying that if you want to take up driving as a hobby, you’ll need a car. However, your practical everyday car may not cut it when it comes to the type of driving experience you are aiming for.
For example, if you are the adventurous type, off-road driving may be right up your alley. If this is the case, you’ll need a capable 4×4 vehicle.
2. License, Insurance, and Registration
Having the required documentation will help to keep you out of legal trouble when enjoying your hobby.
3. Tire Jack, Spare Tire, and Lug Wrench
The last thing you want is to be left stranded during one of your trips as a result of a flat tire.
4. First Aid Kit
Since you’ll be spending a lot of time in your vehicle, it’s highly recommended that you have a small supply of medical essentials on hand.
Other essential equipment to have in your car include:
- Tactical flashlight
- Reflective triangles and/or flares
- Duct tape
- Warm gear
- Cleaning supplies
Start-Up and Ongoing Costs
The average cost of a new car in the United States is $47,000, but this greatly varies depending on the type of car that you choose.
In terms of ongoing costs, you will have to set aside some funds for insurance payments, fuel, vehicle maintenance, and repair.
Can You Make Money From Driving?
Driving is one of those hobbies that you can turn into a profession. There are a number of ways that you can earn from driving, from taxi driving, chauffeur services, bus driving, to tour driving; the opportunities are limitless.
You can also make money by applying for a job as a driving instructor or by starting a blog or YouTube channel educating others about cars and driving.
Similar Hobbies to Driving
If you are looking for a similar hobby to driving that gives you the freedom of being on the road, you can consider cycling, motorcycle riding, offroading, and ATV riding.
Alternative Hobbies to Driving
Driving is not the only fun activity that involves cars. Other hobbies you could choose include RC driving, car restoration and rebuilding, photographing vintage cars, attending car exhibitions and shows, car racing video games, and so on.
Where to Learn More
There are many places you can learn more about driving as a hobby. These include your local driving school and car dealership, books about turning driving into a hobby, and online through websites, blogs, and YouTube videos.