If you haven’t had the experience of going through an online traffic school while dealing with technical issues, phone calls to customer service based in some other country, being unfairly up-charged with hidden “processing fees” and outdated courses that still don’t even work on smartphones, then let me tell you, it isn’t a fun experience.
Don’t worry, I’m going to save you from all that trouble.
As a former driving instructor who created online driver training programs, I know about all the different online traffic schools available and the companies behind them. One of the reasons I created this site was to help drivers ed students sign up for a quality course, and eventually, I started reviewing defensive driving and traffic school courses as well. I’ve been through just about all of them.
I’ll get into my specific reason why a bit later, but for those who just want the fast answer, THIS is the online traffic school I recommend.
What Has Changed Since Last Year?
The best online traffic school in 2021 is actually different than my top pick in 2020. That’s because there have been some pretty big changes in the industry just over the past year. The biggest disruption was a much-needed newcomer to the online traffic school world. This online traffic school has quickly, just in the past year, become the top-selling online traffic school in just about every state where it is certified and court-approved. They also get great reviews and it is the single most modern course that exists.
On the other side of things, most existing online traffic schools have simply become worse in 2020. There are now more outdated courses than ever, and these courses are somehow still “state-approved”. Do not get sucked into one of these courses that were developed 10 or even 20 years ago. Sure, some of them have been haphazardly “updated”, but believe me, their efforts fall very short.
Common Issues With Online Traffic Schools In 2021
Online traffic schools in 2021 have unfortunately just gotten worse. Here are some of the main issues you’re likely to run into if you sign up for a poor quality or outdated course:
- Identity Verification System Failures: This has always been a big problem with online traffic schools and it remains the biggest issue in 2021. Most states require certain identity verification systems to be used to make sure that YOU are really the one taking the course. This can be done by asking you secret questions, voice authentication, and a few other methods. Unfortunately, it is very prone to working incorrectly, in which case you’ll be locked out of your course until you call customer service. That, of course, leads to long hold times on the phone and you finally get a rep from some outsourced customer service company based in India that has no clue what they’re doing. It’s incredibly frustrating and is still an ongoing problem. If you want to go with an online traffic school that has customer service based right here in the United States (Austin, Texas to be exact) try out Aceable.
- Crappy On Smartphones: Just about every online traffic school in 2021 boasts that they have mobile-friendly versions of their courses. “Use any device!”, they say. Yeah, well, that’s until you find out their mobile versions suck. Most of these courses were designed before smartphones, and while they have done their best to make them mobile-friendly, it just doesn’t work most of the time. Apps quit unexpectedly, you lost work, have to start chapters over, etc. Incredibly frustrating. If you want to take your course on a mobile device, this online traffic school is the only one that has built mobile apps from the ground up for each specific device.
- Hidden Fees: What’s funny is, just about every online traffic school will say they don’t have hidden fees, but then you find out later that they do. Here’s an example – you’re a procrastinator and waited until the week before your due date to complete your online traffic school course. When you reach the end, you see that the processing time for your certificate is 10 to 14 days, which means it won’t be processed until after your due date. But wait! If you pay a low fee of $40 (or more sometimes) you can get it processed within 24 hours! This is one of the oldest tricks in the book. Once again, Aceable processes your certificate right away, which is another reason I recommend them as my top choice traffic school in 2021.
- Horrific Customer Service: If you think you’ve experienced poor customer service before, just wait until you need to call the customer service number for an online traffic school. It’s a nightmare. Most online traffic schools in 2021 don’t even operate their own customer service, rather, they outsource it to the cheapest offshore customer service company they can find. Most of the centers you call are handling calls from multiple companies and just have a script to follow. In other words, most of the time they are useless, and you end up getting transferred from person to person until you’re finally told someone will have to call you back. Yup, here comes another plug for Aceable. While they don’t have 24hr customer service, which I’d like to see, all their customer service reps are based right in Austin, Texas.
I could probably keep listing more reasons online traffic schools continue to suck in 2021, but those are some of the things you should watch out for if you don’t sign up for my top recommended online traffic school.
Alternate Online Traffic Schools To Consider
While I’ve made it pretty clear that Aceable is my top choice online traffic school in 2021, there are some other decent options available out there, so before I wrap up this article, here are some additional online traffic schools you may want to consider.