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Frequently Asked Questions

Questions Commonly Asked of the Alafia Driving Academy

You have questions, we have answers!

What are Florida's Requirements to drive if you are a teenager?

Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles' "First Time Driver" webpage has a complete list of what's required. The first steps though are to:

  • Take a Drugs, Alcohol, Traffic, Awareness (DATA) course

  • Parental Consent Form

  • and Documents needed to establish your proof of identity

  • At that point you may then take Written, Vision and Hearing Tests


​If you'd like to, you can download the Florida DMV Handbook from here.

What does GDL mean?

Short "English Version":

A GDL (Graduated Driver Licensing) means that it takes time and effort to get a full license.


Longer Version:

According to Florida's DMV (Licensing Requirements for Teens - Graduated Driver Licensing) page there are several steps involved.


To get your Permit:

  1. Proof that you completed a Traffic Law and Substance Abuse Education course or a license from any state, country, or jurisdiction, and

  2. Parental Consent Form, which must be signed in the presence of a driver license examiner or notarized if parent or guardian will not be present. If you are under 18 and are not married one parent or legal guardian must sign your license application. Step-parents may not sign unless they have legally adopted you.

  3. Documents needed to establish your proof of identity, proof of social security number (if issued), and proof of residential address.


But wait that's not all!:

The you get to 'test'...

  1. A Written Test covering the following areas:

    1. Road Rules - 20 multiple choice questions about traffic laws - must have 15 correct answers to pass.

    2. Road Signs - 20 multiple choice questions about road signs - must have 15 correct answers to pass.

  2. Vision Test using an eye machine. To pass, you must have 20/40 (or better) vision in each and both eyes, with or without corrective lenses.

  3. Hearing Test


Make sure your teen studies the Florida Driver Handbook - most teens could pass the 'Signs' test - but how many know teens could answer "Who has the right-of-way in Florida?"

(The answer is no one! The law only says who must yield (give up) the right-of-way. Every driver, motorcyclist, moped rider, bicyclist and pedestrian must do everything possible to avoid a crash.)

When your teen successfully aquires their permit:

Only drive during daylight hours during the first three months and until 10 p.m. thereafter. Always with a licensed driver who is at least 21 years old and occupies the front passenger seat.

Then to finally recieve your Official Florida Class E Drivers License:

You are eligible one year after you recieve your permit (or turn 18) to return to the DMV with

  1. A Florida Learner's License or a license from another jurisdiction.

  2. Parent or guardian certification that you have at least 50 hours of behind the wheel driving experience, of which 10 hours must be at night.

THEN you may take the DMV Driving Test!

Do you offer the Drugs, Alcohol, Traffic, Awareness (DATA) course or Traffic Law & Substance Abuse Education Course (TLSAE)?

No, at this time, the Alafia Driving Academy does not offer any online courses.

What is the difference between the DATA and TLSAE Course?



There is no difference. Officially named the Traffic Law and Substance Abuse Education (TLSAE), this driver education course is still commonly referred to as the Drug, Alcohol, Traffic Awareness (DATA) course. Regardless the name, the 4 hour course is for individuals who have never had a Driver's License in the State of Florida. 


Courses are commonly known as:

  • DATA (drugs, alcohol, traffic, awareness)

  • DATE (drugs, alcohol, traffic education)

  • TLSAE (traffic law substance abuse education)

Do you offer any online programs?

No. At this time, we are exclusively an in-person, behind-the-wheel training academy. 

Are students required to have a license prior to registering with the Alafia Driving Academy?

Yes. Students must first obtain a Learner Permit (Or also called a Learner's License) before the start of their program. A Florida Learner's License can be obtained at the age of 15, after completing the DATA course. Please visit the Florida DMV Website for more learner's license requirements. 

Will participating in your courses lower my insurance rates?

It's a 'Definite Maybe'. 
No driving school can guarantee reduced insurance rates. We suggest you contact your motor vehicle insurance company and ask prior to registering. We are a State Licensed Driving School and our vehicles are properly registered and commercially insured (your insurance company will want to know).

When is someone going to do SOMETHING about texting and driving?!?!?!?

As of July 1st, 2019 it is now a Primary Offence to Text and Drive. You can google it, or check out this random article.

Where are you physically located?

We are based out of the Bloomingdale area, however at the Alafia Driving Academy, we come to you. We have purposely chosen not to invest in a private stand-alone office to avoid passing on the overhead charges to our students.

What kind of vehicle will the student drive at the Alafia Driving Academy?

As of June 2015, we have three vehicles in our fleet.  We primary use two dual controlled 2015 Mazda CX5 (s), and a 2014 Mazda6 Sedan for the manual transmission classes. 

Am I required to take a driver education course to obtain my driver’s license?


The only courses you are REQUIRED to take is the Traffic Law and Substance Abuse Education Courses (TLSAE), then pass the Permit Exam before you recieve your driver's permit. Or, if you are over 18 pass the TLSAE and you can take the Driving Skills test right away.

What is a "30 and 6" driver education course?

A “30 and 6” driver education course is the traditional course consisting of at least 30 hours of instruction in a classroom environment and 6 hours of behind-the-wheel training conducted by a certified instructor that coaches the student and observes his or her driving performance.

The Alafia Driving Academy does not offer traditional courses, so we would be the "6" part.

Can I smoke in the car?



In the state of Florida, if you are convicted of possession of tobacco products before the age of 18, you driving privileges will be suspended.

Shame on you!

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