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Statistics sourced from Transport for New South Wales (NSW) show that more people aged between 17-20 are choosing to go without a driver’s licence, with the last five years showing a slow, but steady decline.

While licence rates across all age groups are slightly up from 10 years ago, 17 to 20-year olds and 21 to 25-year olds are showing a decline over the last five years.

As of 2016, 80.1 per cent of people aged 17 to 20 in NSW held a driver’s licence – including L-platers and P-platers – which is down 1.7 per cent from 2012’s figure of 81.8 per cent.

Meanwhile, a stronger decline has been seen in the 21 to 25 age group, with 91.4 per cent of people holding a driver’s licence, down from 94.6 per cent in 2012.

However, it’s clear the majority of people still hold licences despite the growing population.

“Whilst there is no real change in the proportions of young people with a driver licence between 2007 and 2016 in NSW, there has been a small decline in the percentage of young people holding a licence since 2012,” a spokesperson from Transport for NSW told CarAdvice.

“Despite the very slight decline in licensing levels amongst young people in NSW since 2012, the overwhelming majority of young people continue to hold a driver’s licence – in 2016 around four out of five 17 to 20 year olds and eleven out of twelve 21 to 25 years held a licence.”

More significant changes have been observed overseas, with British authorities claiming there has been a 20 per cent drop in the overall number of under-25s learning to drive, while the number of 17-year olds taking the practical driving test has dropped by over 100,000 in the last decade.

The UK’s HonestJohn.co.uk says the reason for such significant declines in Britain can be attributed to skyrocketing insurance costs, with teenagers driving a small hatchback worth around 8000 pounds ($13,465) are being quoted between 8750-13,498 pounds ($14,727-$22,719) for a 12-month comprehensive policy depending on their location.

Back on local soil, CarAdvice contacted VicRoads for further comments, but are yet to receive a response.

MORE: New South Wales news

Are you surprised about today’s licence rates amongst young people?




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