Traffic School Costs
Is Not Attending Traffic School More Expensive?


For many drivers facing a traffic ticket, a critical decision is whether to attend traffic school or deal with the potential increase in insurance costs. This article aims to compare the costs of traffic school with the long-term financial implications of higher insurance premiums, helping drivers make an informed choice to save money.

The Cost of Traffic School

The cost of attending traffic school varies, but it generally includes a course fee and sometimes additional administrative charges. Prices can differ based on the type of course (online or in-person) and the provider. Despite these costs, traffic school is often an affordable option, especially when considering online traffic school alternatives.

Understanding Insurance Rate Increases After a Traffic Ticket

A traffic ticket can lead to a significant rise in insurance premiums. Insurance companies view tickets as indicators of risky driving behavior, often resulting in increased rates. The exact amount of the increase depends on various factors, including the severity of the violation and the driver's insurance policy.

Comparing Long-Term Costs

When comparing the one-time expense of traffic school to the ongoing cost of increased insurance premiums, traffic school often emerges as the more financially savvy option. While the upfront cost might seem burdensome, it's usually less than the cumulative increase in insurance rates over time.

An Example

While California courts require a non-refundable administrative fee of $52, the course costs for online traffic school are typically less than $50. We will have to pay the ticket bail amount regardless of whether we choose to enroll in traffic school or not, so our total additional cost is usually less than $100.

Financial Benefits of Traffic School

Attending traffic school can offer substantial financial benefits. It can prevent the increase in insurance costs associated with a ticket and, in some cases, can even lead to insurance discounts. This makes traffic school a cost-effective solution for drivers looking to manage their expenses effectively.

Calculating Your Best Option

To determine the best financial choice, calculate the total cost of traffic school and compare it with the projected increase in your insurance premiums over time. Consider factors like the duration of the insurance rate increase and any discounts you might receive for completing traffic school.


Deciding between traffic school and facing increased insurance costs requires careful consideration of the long-term financial implications. In many cases, traffic school offers a cost-effective way to manage the fallout from a traffic ticket, helping drivers save money in the long run. As a driver, it's crucial to weigh these options and choose the path that best aligns with your financial goals and circumstances.