Pleasant Experience: Cobb County DMV

On December 19th of 2007 I celebrated my birthday as many other Georgians do: by renewing my car tags.

My first and hopefully only year to register in Cobb county (no offense, Cobborinas), I found myself shocked and delighted at the single best DMV experience in the twenty plus years I’ve been driving.

I rolled into the parking lot of the South Cobb Government Service Centers at 4700 Austell Road thirty minutes before the office opened. It was partially intentional: big cuppa coffee and a good read in hand, along with a mental preparation to sit/stand and *wait*. The third person in line behind a closed door, I took a spot on the tiled floor and waited patiently, fully primed to have forgotten some unknown but needed document to transfer between counties and also ready to blow a wad of money on a sticker I’d rather spend on myself since it *was* my birthday thankyouverymuch.

The doors opened, I was directed to a perky gal behind a podium (not a window) and found the following:
– I had all the documents needed
– Their application was able to pull up everything she needed to know about me
– I was able to pay by debit/check, unlike Fulton county where I always ended up at an ATM somewhere b/c I don’t believe in checkbooks

So here’s the glorious timeline:
– In @ 8:30
– Out @ 8:33
– Sticker on @ 8:35
– On the road @ 8:36

I’m just sayin’, it was a helluva surprise having a pleasant experience at a DMV office and gave me an entirely new appreciation for a place I don’t want to like because of the big homophobic scar they left on us during the Olympics . Oh, had you forgotten about that? I hadn’t.


7 Comments so far

  1. Becket (unregistered) on January 25th, 2008 @ 12:04 am

    I had a similar experience at the Gwinnett DMV location on Beaver Ruin road, where I went to renew my DL.

    I went to the QT across the street to get a newspaper, and walked into the office, ready for the long haul. I didn’t even open the paper. I was in and out in 10 minutes. This was at about 10 am on a wednesday morning.

  2. BTI (unregistered) on January 25th, 2008 @ 9:25 am

    I had a great experience when I read your post. I realized because of the living, working and lifestyle choices I’ve made, I’ll never be going to the DMV again to fork over hundreds of dollars to register a car I don’t want or need. Thanks for brightening my day!

  3. Tony (unregistered) on January 25th, 2008 @ 11:24 am

    No to nitpick, Ms. Maigh, but you technically went to the Government Services building, a branch of the Cobb Tax Commissioner’s Office. The closest actual DMV to you would be on County Services Road and is a division of the Georgia Department of Driver Services.

    The distinction is important because, while I too have had stellar experiences at the Tag Offices on Austell Road and South Cobb Drive, I challenge anyone to leave the DMV without contemplating mass murder. My last visit was in 2004 and it took 5.5 hours. You can read about it here if you’re having trouble falling to sleep.

  4. Maigh (unregistered) on January 25th, 2008 @ 12:19 pm

    Ah yes, you’re right, Tony. Where I come from they’re both called the DMV…it’s a hard habit to break.

    On that note, I’d been to the “real” DMV a week or so prior to update my address, and was in and out in 20 minutes. The woman I was chatting with, however, had already been there an hour and a half. See new mug shot here, if you want nightmares:

  5. Rashid Z. Muhammad (unregistered) on January 25th, 2008 @ 7:13 pm

    Over the last few years everything related to the DMV has been markedly improved. It has gone from an absolute nightmare to as pleasant an experience as I would think one could reasonably expect. This is one initiative that our government really followed through on.

  6. Mary (unregistered) on January 25th, 2008 @ 9:14 pm

    Believe it or not, I actually had a pleasant experience with the downtown Atlanta DMV (or DDS I guess it is now) when I had to get a new license and change my name. It was on a Saturday and I was in and out of there in about 15 minutes. Everyone was nice and pleasant, I had all the necessary paperwork – I just showed them the papers, got my picture taken, and I was done. I was amazed. I felt like I had stepped into the twilight zone.

  7. Roxie (unregistered) on January 26th, 2008 @ 3:00 pm

    Tony’s very correct.

    When I got my license a little over a year ago at the DMV on County Services, it was a bad experience. I had heard DMV employees tend to be a little on the short tempered side, which I can understand, working in customer service for 7+ years.

    So I decided to be upbeat, pleseant, and conversational.

    By the time I got out of the car I was sullen, shakey, thrown off my game, and ready to cry.

    However, the people at the office you saw were very nice when I went to apply for my tag. I paid for my renewal online :)

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