Photo credit: oatsy40, licensed under Flickr Creative Commons

More evidence (as if we needed it), that traditional car ownership is not the smartest transport solution if you live in a big city like London. Here at Zipcar, we’ve crunched the numbers and done some research** into the costs of car insurance around the country, and the findings aren’t pretty…

In fact, if you own a car and live in London, you could be paying up to £500 more per year to insure your vehicle than the rest of the UK. At £1,170 on average, insuring a car in the capital works out 75% higher and costs £4.33 for every hour the car is typically in use, compared to £2.21 outside of London. Ouch.

What’s more, after depreciation, the average London car owner can expect to spend more money insuring their motor over the next two and a half years, then their car might actually be worth. Hmm, time to think about an alternative approach to car ownership perhaps??

The research findings were pretty sobering:

  • The average Londoner between 20-54 years of age spends just 5 hours 29 minutes in their car every week, with insurance costing £4.04 per hour used. This compares to 6 hours 4 minutes, and £2.38 per hour used outside of the capital
  • London car owners between 25-34 years of age spend more on car insurance in a little over two years (26 months) than their car will be worth at the end of that period. This works out at £4.14 for every hour the car is in use and compares to £2.83 per hour used outside of London
  • Over 55s in London spend £6.19 on car insurance per hour used, compared to £1.97 outside of London – with annual insurance costing more than double in the capital

In London, of course, we benefit from excellent public transport and when you think about the increasing cost of owning a car yourself, something just doesn’t add up. We know there are always times when you need a car (yes, Ikea trip, we’re looking at you.) For some journeys, nothing else will do. But when there’s a handy Zipcar parked on your street, why have all the expense and hassle of owning, when you can Zip when you want? And of course, insurance, the Congestion Charge and 40 free miles fuel per day are always included in your Zipcar reservation, giving you all of the freedom of driving, without any of the stress.

Know any London car owners? You might want to spread the word about how much their car insurance is really costing them…

** Zipcar research carried out in October 2013 by Censuswide

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