Giving up distracted driving: 4 pro tips for ignoring your phone

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We know you know. Distracted driving is dangerous and you shouldn’t do it. You hear it everywhere. But sometimes hearing it just isn’t enough. At Root, giving up distracted driving can actually save you money—up to an additional 10% off, increasing the huge savings we already give to great drivers.

So how do you keep yourself from being distracted behind the wheel?

Here are 4 tips Root drivers have found helpful:

1. Choose a time frame and commit.

Choose a time frame and commit illustration

So, the first step is to recognize there’s a problem and commit to making a change—a concrete change. That means picking an amount of time (at least 3 weeks, according to science) and going cold turkey. Phone in a bag or in the backseat. No ifs, ands, or buts.

It’s hard to break a habit. That’s why goal-setting is essential. Once you commit to ditching the phone while driving, make sure you’re all-in. Do whatever you need to do. But just do it. Make the commitment.

2. Prep your driving entertainment in advance.

Man standing in front of a giant juke box

How many times has your podcast ended mid-drive? Ever run out of tunes before you’re halfway there? The night before work, prep a playlist that covers your commute. (How about this one we made to get you started?)

3. Find your 2-minute pre-driving ritual.

You’ve done it with your seatbelt—we hope. What else do you need to do? Try looking up directions, plugging in your aux cord, and turning up the volume before you hit the road.

Try doing all those things before you start driving. Every time.

The most important habit? Put your phone away before you drive. Lock it in the trunk, put it in the glove box, give it to the dog—be creative.

4. Get technology on your side.

Hand reaching for a phone

Don’t trust yourself yet? Luckily, technology has your back. Some phones include a Do Not Disturb feature that prevents notifications from coming through while you’re driving. You can customize settings, including an auto-reply to texts, or even allow the sender to push an urgent message through.

Want more options? There are apps to help with that. They do things like automatically silencing your phone while you’re driving or updating your friends about where you are on your route.

The transition will be tough. But if notifications aren’t coming through while you’re driving, the temptation to pick up the phone will decrease.


It’s not easy in this digital age to stay away from technology. We get it. But the stats for distracted driving aren't pretty. We could all do better.

Already a fantastic, undistractable driver? Awesome. Download the Root app and get a rate based primarily on your great driving habits.

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