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The 6-Hour Defensive Driving Course: The Biggest Discount You’re Missing

November 16th, 2023 | 3 min read

By Daniel J. Middleton

Frustrated with ever-rising auto insurance premiums in Central New York? You’re not alone.


There’s a solution that can save a few dollars on your car insurance bill: the defensive driving course. It’s a simple online course that takes only six hours to complete. And it can give you the biggest discount you’re missing.

We’re Horan, a Baldwinsville-based insurance agency. We’ve been helping drivers like you secure car insurance savings since 2009.

In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about the defensive driving course. We’ll explain how it works, what it covers, and how to sign up.

Ready to start saving? Then keep reading.

How the 6-Hour Defensive Driving Course Works

Like many CNY residents, you want to save money on your car insurance. But insurance rates keep rising. Major carriers like Geico and Farmers Insurance recently laid off thousands of employees. And several insurers announced massive underwriting losses in 2022 that spilled over to 2023. This points to even higher rates ahead.

Searching for a new, cheap insurer every year takes time. A better option is to consider taking the defensive driving course instead. It provides big savings on your auto premium. And the 6-hour online class is easy to fit in over 30 days.

The online course lets you log in and out, and there is no final exam. The insurance discount lasts 3 years. It saves up to 10 percent on three portions of your auto premium:

  1. collision,
  2. no-fault, and
  3. liability

After 3 years, just retake the course to renew the savings.

The discount applies to the primary operator of each vehicle. So both spouses would need to take it. But not an occasional driver like your teenager. The key is being the main driver of the vehicle.

If you buy your teen a car in 3 months, have him or her take the course too. They’ll be the main driver and earn savings.

This is different from the 5-hour pre-licensing class. The defensive driving course just cuts your premiums. It also reduces points on your license. But tickets stay on your history. So it won’t erase violations that raise your rates. The big perk is the lower premium.

For most insurers, you can take the course anytime mid-policy. Send them the certificate and the discount starts prorated.

Prorated means adjusted for a specific time period. For example, if you’re due a program discount of $200 per year and you join the program on July 1, your prorated discount for that year would be $100.


Another Benefit of the 6-Hour Defensive Driving Course

The strategies you learn in the course make you a safer driver. It teaches anticipating hazards and reacting properly. You gain insight into handling skids and adverse conditions. It covers avoiding distractions that lead to accidents.

The course instills good habits like signaling and scanning intersections. Practicing these techniques reduces your risk on the road. Driving defensively keeps you and others protected. Applying these lessons after the class is done saves lives.

Where Can I Take the 6-Hour Defensive Driving Course in New York State?

Some find this course a chore to sit through. That doesn’t mean you can have your assistant take the course for you. Proctors do random check-ins and tests during the online class. They ensure you complete it yourself.

You can also take it in person locally. Check with your library, as they may know of upcoming classes.

If you want a little entertainment with your driving course to make the time go by, opt for Learn with a Smile Improv. For more traditional courses, try:

The New York Safety Council Defensive Driving Course

Save Money and Drive Safely with the 6-Hour Defensive Driving Course

Don’t let rising auto insurance rates frustrate you. You have the power to lower your premium and improve your driving skills. By taking the 6-hour defensive driving course, you can save up to 10 percent on your collision, no-fault, and liability coverage for 3 years.

You can also reduce points on your license and learn how to avoid accidents and hazards on the road. The course is easy to complete online or in person, and you can start saving as soon as you finish it.

Don’t miss this opportunity to take control of your car insurance costs and become a safer driver. Sign up for the 6-hour defensive driving course and see the difference for yourself.

Are you curious about how much you could save on your policy by taking the course? If you’re already a customer of Horan, you can call us anytime. We will tell you your exact savings. If you’re not a customer yet, don’t worry, we can still help you. We can give you a quote with the discount included, so you can see how much you would save too!

If you’re ready to purchase auto insurance, click the Get a Quote button below. One of our friendly insurance specialists will contact you to discuss your options.

And here are a few more reasons you’re seeing auto insurance rates going up in New York State.

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Daniel J. Middleton

Daniel is an accomplished content creator. He has been working in publishing for almost two decades. Horan Companies hired Daniel as its content manager in November 2022. The agency entrusted its messaging to him. Since then, Daniel has written insurance articles, service pages, PDF guides, and more. All in an effort to educate CNY readers. He's helping them understand the world of insurance so they can make informed decisions.