Is a driving license more important during a pandemic?

Suspended flights due to the pandemic and the not-so-ideal circumstances of public transportation have recently motivated many people in Romania to get their driver’s license. Driving schools in Szeklerland have varying opinions on the trend. (szekelyhon.ro)

Cars in Romania
During the pandemic, traveling by car is safer than using public transportation. (Photo: Attila Pinti/szekelyhon.ro)

Driving instructors agree that a driver’s license today is essential, almost indispensable in all parts of life. Public transportation in Romania has never been too reliable in terms of keeping to the timetable nor has it ever maintained proper hygiene; but since the pandemic, traveling by train or bus requires even more precaution. In cities, those who can afford it take a taxi instead of getting on a bus, for example, and they try to avoid public transportation in the case of longer-distance trips as well.

The director of a driving school in Marosvásárhely (Târgu Mureș), Zoltán Hajdú, told szekelyhon.ro that because of the pandemic restrictions, holidays originally planned abroad had to be canceled, while domestic trips and hiking destinations became more popular. These people now need a car and a driver’s license to get to these local destinations, which resulted in an increase in the number of their students.

“Though it has not doubled, the number of registrations at our driving school has increased by more than 50%”

– said Hajdú, who also thinks that the people who could not travel this year as they did in previous years have also saved money, which they can now spend on driving lessons, for example.

But an increased interest in driving lessons was not experienced everywhere in Szeklerland. Árpád Demeter, from Csíkszereda (Miercurea Ciuc), told szekelyhon.ro that more people may have registered for their driving school, but the increase was not significant. “Mostly youngsters are the ones taking driving lessons because they need a driver’s license,” said the head of the Csíkszereda driving school.

The representative of the third driving school (from Székelyudvarhely/Odorheiu Secuiesc) questioned by the szekelyhon.ro portal said that they have so much work they can hardly keep up. However, they said this was due to the fact that they had been closed for three months during the pandemic.

“Interest (in our classes) is high, but the reason for this is that everybody wants to make up for lost time.”

– said Magda Mária Turáni.



Title image: Attila Pinti/szekelyhon.ro 


Author: Attila Szoó