Rant & Rave: Division of Motor Vehicles

October 2012

Rant: I had to go to the DMV. Need I say more? 

This is obvious. I don't know a soul who looks forward to the day they must venture to the Division of Motor Vehicles, unless they are a 16-year-old who is finally testing for a driver's license. The underlying problem with the DMV is that, to the outside public, this seemingly simple process—questions about citizenship, an eye test, a bad photo, and handing over your $21 bucks—takes far too long. You never really know how long you'll be stuck in a seat waiting for your number to be called.

What complicates everything is when the computer system—which is needed throughout the entire process—crashes. I was at the DMV last week and the system crashed twice in less than 30 minutes, which left employees and DMV-goers legitimately twiddling their thumbs. An upset man sitting next to me said he had spent the last two days shuffling from DMV to DMV to find a location without server problems. There's got to be a better option.

Rave: There is a better option.

When I visited the DMV last week, I missed out on most of the normal DMV mess. I walked into the office at 8:15 a.m. and within five minutes my number popped up on the queue screen. I cruised through questions and failed a non-glasses eye exam. Just before the DMV worker was about to stamp an approval for my acceptance as a Colorado resident, though, the system crashed (see above rant).

The glitch could have spoiled my experience, but I had an appointment. That's right. The DMV takes appointments, which I discovered while cruising the Division of Motor Vehicle website to help me wrangle the documents I'd need. Yes, it was that easy. I just had to show up a few minutes early to check in. And, when the system crashed it was no big deal, because I hadn't wasted my morning waiting in line. DMV meets modern convenience.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Follow editorial assistant Lindsey R. McKissick on Twitter at @LindseyRMcK.