In July 2019, the French Government introduced new laws concerning the achievement of the driving license Among these, there's an increase in the driving hours that can be done by using a simulator.
On the occasion, the Ministry of the Interior of Paris motivated the decision by explaining that the use of these tools would have brought advantages both to driving schools, reducing the use of cars on the road, and to students by improving the learning environment.
Moreover, the French government has introduced tax incentives on the purchase of these tools, to facilitate their adoption by driving schools; it then created a press campaign in which it highlights the economic savings, for the benefit of the candidates, of obtaining the license by using a simulator for part of the driving hours.
In Germany, there are nearly 11.500 driving schools of whom more or less 400 use driving simulators nowadays.
Using driving simulators has two advantages for driving schools:
- the driving training quality can be increased by the possibility of simulating more traffic situations during a lesson.
- the contribution margin (difference between the unit selling price and the unit variable cost) of an hour in the simulator is significantly higher than the one of an hour of traditional driving in a car with dual controls.
50% of the practical training is officially permitted on the simulator.
180 km of the 500 required to obtain the license can be covered on the simulator.
In recent years, the government has put in place an action plan to reduce CO2 emissions, including several measures aimed at reducing road traffic. Moreover, the use of the driving simulator for lessons in driving schools has been authorized.
Finally, other countries such as Switzerland, Brazil, USA, Morocco, Saudi Arabia and Hungary have authorized the use of simulators by law, while Belgium, the Netherlands and Sweden allow their use even without having adopted specific legislation.