I’ve got the perfect gifts for new drivers and gifts for new car owners in your life – the ones that will help with car maintenance, responsibility, and reliability!
You’ve got a new driver in your house, and maybe even a new car owner. Congratulations!
Your child has taken a really important step in the whole end parenting goal of them eventually leaving the nest with all the right life skills intact.
Are you a little terrified of your child driving?
Don’t fret. I’ve got a gift-buying guide that includes gifts for new drivers and gifts for new car owners that will:
- Make your child’s car more reliable (as they’re likely driving a used car – I’ve been driving one for 18 years!).
- Help reinforce responsible car owner habits that your child can take into adulthood with them.
- Welcome them into the driving world!
So, buckle up (couldn’t help myself), and let’s get going!
Gifts for New Drivers License Owners that Make their Drive Safer + More Reliable
Your teenager is likely driving a used car to begin with – at least that’s what the majority of teens drive.
Used cars and beater cars are awesome, and I’ve been driving them for 18 years now (that’s right, I’ve never owned a car payment in my life, I’ve just paid cash for a beater car and driven it into the ground!). However, they might not be as reliable as brand-new vehicles.
Not only that, but your teen is a new driver. Can you think back to all the mistakes you made as a new driver?
So, this category of gifts for new drivers is all about building more reliability and safety into their driving.
Amazon Gifts for New Driver #1: New Driver Key Chain
The key chain is actually really important for two reasons – both functional ones, like putting keys on it to start the car, and also safety ones, like including some sort of personal safety device on it.
Your teen may not be thinking about these important things, so you can purchase it as a gift for them instead!
Personally, I have a mace keychain on my own. However, it’s not legal in every state for a minor to carry mace. There are also these alarm keychains – and since your teen is driving now, they might find themselves in unoccupied garages, or walking to their car after dark in the winter time.
While you’re at it? You’ll want to make sure they have a spare set of keys – either a spare set of keys for their own car, or for the family car. I know as an adult, I can forget/lose my keys like the best of them, and so I make sure we each have a spare set of keys for the other person’s vehicle.
New Driver Gift #2: Roadside Emergency Kit
What I absolutely love about this roadside emergency kit is that it comes with a free year of roadside assistance! Now that’s some peace of mind in case you can’t get out to help your teen, or can’t leave work to do so if it’s in the middle of the day.
Crazy enough, a one-year membership to Triple AAA is over $50. But this emergency kit that they can keep for years and years? It’s only $39.99.
Included items: a jumper cable, pair of gloves, rain poncho, tow-strap, blanket, headlamp, first aid kit, etc.
New Driver Gift #3: Ice Scraper
Do you live up North? Then you’ll definitely want to make sure your teen’s car is equipped with an ice scraper. I can’t tell you how many times I used mine before moving down South.
Hint: get them their own ice scraper to reinforce the idea that they shoulder the responsibility to scrape their own windshields off.
Gifts for a New Car Owner that Reinforce Responsible Car Ownership Habits
Part of the Mom/Dad-gig? Is making sure your kids understand what “responsible” car ownership looks like.
Heck, you basically have to model for them what “responsible” looks like for everything (including money!).
I’ve curated a few gifts for new drivers that will help to reinforce what a responsible car owner does with their car.
New Driver Gift #4: Car Documents Holder
Your kid is now responsible for some important paperwork having to do with driving + owning their own vehicle. You want to encourage them to keep all those documents in one secure spot in case they need them.
This car documents holder is the perfect way to reinforce this idea. They can store their insurance documents, car title, inspection paperwork, emergency contact numbers, and any roadside assistance numbers in here.
New Driver Gift #5: Car Cleaning Kit
Part of responsible car ownership is keeping the car relatively clean. Not only does this make for better, less distracted driving, but it can keep paint damage/rust from forming, and stains from setting into the seats.
Read: it can save money.
By purchasing this cleaning kit, you’ll be reinforcing the idea that you expect them to keep their own vehicle clean, and/or help with keeping the family vehicle clean now that they’ll be driving in it.
New Driver Gift #6: The Driving Book
You likely won’t be able to cover everything there is about car ownership – unless you’re an expert!
And even if you could, we all know that kids don’t necessarily like listening to their parents at around the same age they get their license.
SO, getting a driving book like this one is a really great idea. It’s geared towards new teen drivers, and covers topics like handling tech while driving, what to do if stopped by a police officer, what to do if you’re in an accident, etc.
Gifts for New Drivers that are Just Plain Fun
Alright, alright. So, we went through the responsible and safety gifts…now it’s onto having some FUN when buying gifts for your new car owner!
New Driver Gift #7: Bling Up their Vehicle
Does your teen enjoy a little bling? There’s some really fun bling they can add to their car around the auto start ignition button.
But don’t stop there! You can also get some Bling-Bling Tire Valve Caps.
And even a bling license plate frame.
Celebrate Getting Driver's License by Creating Your New Driver Survival Kit
If you want to take this all a step further and put together an entire new driver survival kit for your teen/niece/nephew, then I’ve got a few ideas for you.
First off, I have a child myself. If I were to choose what to personally include in his new driver survival kit, it would be the following:
- Roadmap: Yes. An actual, paper roadmap. Hear me out on this – because I know I’ve found myself with a dead phone battery due to forgetting to charge it the night before, so I’m sure a teen is even more likely to be cut off from Google Maps because of forgetting to charge their phone. And what if they get lost? Like, really lost (yes, that has happened to me as well!)?
- Flashlight: Flashlights come in handy for all sorts of reasons. Here’s one with a rechargeable battery, and one with a regular battery.
- Emergency Roadside Kit: I’ve had one of these in my own car since I was a teen, and will continue to have one.
- Set of Spare Keys: We would keep these at home, or with someone else.
As you can see, my own personal list for a new driver survival kit heavily weighs on the safety/reliability side of things. But maybe you would do something different! So, go through and choose the items you want, and then look at a few suggestions below to add in a little something extra.
New Driver Survival Kit Extras:
- Do a Car Treasure Hunt: You might have some fun with actually giving your new driver their gifts/car gift basket for teens using this car treasure hunt.
- Add in a Car Maintenance Checklist: Your child likely doesn’t know all the things that go into being a responsible car owner/driver. Creating a checklist with typical maintenance activities – such as state inspection + registration renewals, gaining car insurance (and shopping around for that car insurance every so often for a better price/better coverage – we personally use USAA auto insurance – check to see your USAA eligibility), oil changes, car wash, etc.
- Put Everything in a Car Organization Container: You could choose several gifts from above, then also purchase a car container/organizer as the “gift bag” to give it to them! Like this car trunk organizer (I like how it comes with straps to keep things from shifting).
What are you most excited about getting for your new driver? Does your teen have a car of their own, or will they share ownership/responsibility with the family vehicle? I’d love to hear more!