Are Men Better Drivers Than Women? | Reader's Digest

Are Men Better Drivers Than Women?

Jump in and take a look at some interesting data from the AAA on how gender steers our driving skills. Are women drivers really so bad, or are men worse?

By Reader's Digest Editors
Are Men Better Drivers Than Women?© Jupiterimages/Pixland/Thinkstock

According to AAA, the answer is yes… and no. Here’s the scoop:

Plus: 11 Crazy Things We Do While Driving

Men take more risks. In studies, men as a whole display less cautious behavior than women, such as driving at higher speeds and closer to other cars, not wearing seat belts, and driving while intoxicated more often. They even make riskier turns and take less time when parking (although they do a more accurate job, says Tom Vanderbilt, author of Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (And What It Says About Us).

BUT… how someone drives doesn’t necessarily equal how well he drives. Men do seem to be more proficient than women at certain driving tasks. However, this slight edge in ability doesn’t translate into better driving records. The kinds of accidents men get into are generally the result of their riskier behavior. According to one study, men are more than three times as likely to be ticketed for “aggressive driving” than women, and more than 25 percent as likely to be at fault in an accident.

Perception is a powerful thing. Despite the research, psychologists claim that it’s difficult to determine whether men are truly innately better drivers than women or if they’re simply more confident in their driving because they’re perceived to be better, and thus show more proficiency. Similarly, the stereotype that women are weaker drivers may negatively affect their performance behind the wheel.

Women are catching up… which isn’t necessarily good news. Men may be responsible for more accidents than women, but the gap is getting smaller. Today, more women drive (and drive more) than ever before, which has the unfortunate consequence of an increase in speeding, aggressive driving, and even fatal crashes among women.

The take home: Learn from the strengths of both sexes. Drive confidently and carefully. And don’t forget to wear your seat belt.

Source: AAA New York Car & Travel

  • Your Comments

    • Christina Duke

      judging from the comments, women are also smarter! lol

    • Guest

      Why can’t we be judged individually instead of being put into categories? I’ve never been in an accident, and have no tickets apart from a couple parking tickets. Have been driving pretty much daily since my 16th birthday(8 years ago), yet I pay more for insurance than women I know my age who have been in accidents.

      • road warrior

        i learned to drive/park at 14 on the narrowest streets in brooklyn. now, at 65 yrs old, there’s not a pkng space i can’t maneuver into or out of (of course without dinging!), have never gotten a tkt or been in an accident. i do most of hwy driving in family cause i get us there quicker. snow/ice/fog, i’m driver of choice. (oh and husband steps out of car and ask’s me to parallel park cause he doesn’t know how). individual skills count more than gender. (also it’s a truism that most women are taught to drive by MEN! so guys, maybe you’re incompetent teachers. food for thought

        • anon

          Men teach others men to drive. Food for thought

    • You suck age

      Who shaves and masturbates while driving?? shaving cream would make a mess and so would “wanking it.” Maaaaaaaybe a newspaper but really… if you couldn’t come up with more why make it up with your (excuse my language) bullshit?

    • Alex_mc64

      Step 1: Underground roads strictly for females.
      Step 2: Texting/applying makeup leading to multiple crashes.
      Step 3: Sit back and laugh.

    • Manieloare1

      men are better than women i have driven and not crased ones

      • Manielhoare1

        that is trues

    • Age

      Can’t wait to see the remarks from the men, because many can’t handle situations where women are better than them at something.  Most of the idiot drivers on the road driving like maniacs are men.  Weaving and bobbing in and out of traffic as if they are on a race track.  I have been driving for 25 years, and riding motorcycles for 10.  This includes big city environments.  Men are more likely to drive more aggressively and stupidly, but certainly not all men.   Some men I know are good drivers. The rest need to get their heads checked.  Also in my years of driving/riding, I have only 1 or 2 times seen a woman put on makeup while driving.  Men criticize women for doing this, and while it is a stupid thing to do, how many times have you seen men reading the paper, shaving, or excuse the language, whacking off?

      • Kyle

        ‘and while it is a stupid thing to do, how many times have you seen men reading the paper, shaving, or excuse the language, whacking off?’ – Are you for real! I have never seen anyone doing any of the three in a car, I have never seen any man shave or masturbate in public at all regardless of being in a car or not, and I know for a fact you are making that last bit up.

        Yes I agree men can be more reckless than women when driving, but if you task a man with a driving task, ANY task, (99% of the time) he will embarrass the woman. For example, parking, women struggle to park on between two white lines, let alone two cars, men find it easy. Men are better navigators, can drive quickly, be more aware of their surroundings and are more confident. 

        Most women I know hate driving (for very good reason, cos they suck at it) yet they will argue to to their last breathe they are better than men at it, come on admit what we all know to be true…

      • Laloesch

        “”reading the paper, shaving, or excuse the language, whacking off?”"”  Please…. I have driven for a long time and more often then not the females are the ones that are totally distracted while driving.  Texting, talking on the phone, doing makeup (have seen this one very often), etc. 

        Most women i know are absolutely horrible at directions and often can’t tell whether to turn left or right (look this up).  They also can’t see worth a dam at night and are generally unaware of drivers around them.

        They are also just as agressive as men when it comes to road rage.  I once had a female driver rear end me at a routine stoplight and she proceeded to block my car in a space, chew me out about she was going to sue me, etc., etc.  I snapped her punk arse back to reality and said 99% of all rearends are the fault of the rearender.  End of story, she drove away and there was no damge to either vehicle, just scuffmarks.  Lot of nerve eh?

        Before you spout off more feminie Nazi / sexist remarks, do a little research. 

      • You Suck Age

        Who shaves and masturbates while driving?? shaving cream would make a mess and so would “wanking it.” Maaaaaaybe a newspaper but really… if you couldn’t come up with more why make it up with your (excuse my language) bullshit?

    • http://www.rayskillmannortheast.com/section/secondary/gmc-dealers-indianapolis/ Tari Ledsome

      Perhaps it might have some truth in general. Still, in the end, it’s all down to the individual. Whether it is men or women, it’s up to them to choose how they act on the road.

    • ALBERT AQUILNA

      IF YOU SEE A WOMEN DRIVING GIVE HER WAY BECAUSE THEY ALWAYS HAVE THE  RIGHT OF WAY  AND KEEP FAR FROM THEM   

    • David Blotzke

      I seen women drivers putting on their make up with a rear view mirror and texting while driving AT THE SAME TIME!

    • http://twitter.com/SafetyMentalst Jerry Rome Bass

      More women pass me up and honk at me and try to make me feel I am in their way !!!