The road is rife with unfair stereotypes associated with various vehicles and their drivers. If you’re a victim of one of these, driving and decorating your car a little differently may help to dispel those beliefs.

The Minivan Soccer Mom

Description: http://i1.wp.com/farm3.staticflickr.com/2630/3685320109_fc876911d8.jpg?resize=500%2C374

Today this stereotype can apply to both old school minivans and the more modern SUV. The reputation for both is the same – mom in a sweater set with kids in the back and sports equipment in the trunk. Shed this stereotype by steering clear of “Baby on Board” signs, bumper stickers about your kid’s place on the honor roll, and window decals featuring each member of your family in stick figure form.

The Haughty Green Hybrid Driver

Description: http://i2.wp.com/farm6.staticflickr.com/5109/5751061476_118c432092.jpg?resize=500%2C333

Though hybrid vehicles become more mainstream all the time, certain forerunners like the Prius still carry the stigma of being driven by the super eco-friendly driver only. Even if you do shop at Whole Foods, recycle all your trash, and use a composting toilet, this doesn’t mean that you look down on people who don’t. Keep your bumper stickers polite and not preachy to battle some of the stereotype.

The Redneck in a Pickup Truck

Description: http://i2.wp.com/farm4.staticflickr.com/3058/3044759005_54636dd4fa.jpg?resize=500%2C375

There are lots of reasons to drive a pickup, and no valid excuse for assuming that every one on the road hauls moonshine, holds a handy gun rack, and displays the confederate flag. Stand apart from the stereotype by making sure you’re always wearing a shirt when you’re on the road (and no, overalls alone do not count as adequate upper body coverage). Avoid dipping and spitting out the window at stop lights as well.

The Sports Car Driver in a Midlife Crisis

Description: http://i0.wp.com/farm5.staticflickr.com/4083/5098816526_82896c14c3.jpg?resize=500%2C375

Flashy, expensive sports cars stereotypically scream midlife crisis. If you are, indeed, middle-aged, battle the stigma of the car by owning up to your place in life in other ways. Don’t blast the same music that your teens listen to or try to rock that trucker hat at a jaunty angle while you’re cruising around town in your Porsche.

The Reckless Teen in a Tacky Junker

Description: http://i2.wp.com/farm8.staticflickr.com/7243/7283437814_0b4aefcc4b.jpg?resize=500%2C333

There are lots of valid reasons why teenagers driver older vehicles with a bit of wear and tear. Other drivers who spot these cars decked out with self-important bumper stickers and fuzzy dice often assume that the teen behind the wheel is busy texting, talking on the phone, or checking lipstick in the rearview mirror. Prove them otherwise by driving cautiously and courteously.

The Slow Senior in the Towncar

Description: http://i1.wp.com/farm4.staticflickr.com/3060/2552693957_ccf3eac56b.jpg?resize=500%2C333

Certain cars, like an older model Lincoln Towncar, seem the exclusive realm of the elderly. As such, drivers expect them to move slowly and perhaps show some signs of poor driving. Battle the stereotype at any age by keeping up with the speed limit and using your turn signal only when necessary – not ten miles before your intended turn.

Whatever you drive, stay safe on the road with the right insurance.