Think you know AARP? What you don't know about us may surprise you. Discover all the 'Real Possibilities'


Car buying made easy with the AARP Auto Buying Program


AARP Games - Play Now!

Contests and

Dream Vacation Sweepstakes

10 weeks. 10 amazing trips. Seize your chance to win!
See official rules. 

Home & Transportation

AARP Driver Safety

Retraining courses and counseling. Go

Home Fit Guide

How to make your house a home — for life. Go

Housing and Mobility Publications

Free booklets on home modification, design and transportation options. Go


April Discount

40% off of the AARP Smart Driver Course!





When Is It Time to Hang Up the Keys?

Free seminar helps families talk to older drivers

A woman leans against ship railing, cruising by yourself

Traveling Solo?

Connect with others and find travel buddies in the Single Travelers online community group.

Harriet Warren, AARP Driver Safety

Harriet Warren, 85, of Tucson, still drives her own car. Her children worry about her driving. "We Need to Talk" helps families prepare for that conversation. — Andy DeLisle

Here's a little secret about talking with an older parent about a possible end to driving: Try some small talk.

Start with, perhaps, the hazards of driving in inclement weather. Then work up to what happens when eyes age and reflexes slow.

Discover all the real possibilities AARP has to offer during Life@50+ in Boston.

That approach worked for Diane Valuck, 65, of Tucson, when she and her mother, Jean Valuck, had long conversations in 2001 about hanging up the keys. They included the perilous winter driving in Michigan, where Jean lived.

Jean eventually acknowledged she could no longer handle the winter road conditions, and she didn't fancy the cost of keeping a car in good repair.

At 85, Jean made her decision. She sold her Pontiac and for the last decade of her life used the transportation offered by her assisted living center for shopping and medical appointments.

The elements in the Valucks' example come right off the pages of an AARP seminar, "We Need to Talk."

When is it time to talk?
The free seminar, also available online as a 90-minute webinar, helps family members recognize when to initiate "the talk" and illustrates how to work toward the decision after warning signs appear.

Those signs can include getting lost in familiar territory, running over curbs, paint smears on the fender or dents in the mailbox post by the driveway.

"We're not telling anybody to stop driving," said Hal Parrott, 79, of Scottsdale, a seminar leader. "If there's a problem, we just want you to know how to proceed."

Some of the tips seem aimed directly at families like that of Harriet Warren, 85, of Tucson.

Warren says she still drives quite well. But her children, who live in various parts of the country, worry.

The seminar urges people like Warren's children to gather plenty of solid information before jumping to a conclusion that a parent should no longer drive.

Next page: What about alternatives to driving? »

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts


Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Video Extra

Older drivers are more fragile than their younger counterparts and are generally less able to withstand the impact from accidents. Learn how properly fitting your car better ensures your safety and that of others on the road.

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

in the news

Discounts & Benefits

This program is supported by a generous grant from Toyota to AARP Foundation.

*Upon completion, you may be eligible to receive an auto insurance discount. Other restrictions apply.

Consult your agent for details.