BRITISH PARENTS SPEND £51.2M A YEAR DRIVING CHILDREN ONE MILE OR LESS TO SCHOOL

1.2 million unnecessary cars blight the roads during peak times
If you live near school – ‘walk don’t school-run’

May 21, 2013

British parents are clocking up a colossal £51.2 million1 bill each year taxiing their children less than one mile to school, according to new research from Zipcar, the pay-as-drive car club. That’s a phenomenal 1.2 million2 extra cars on the roads during peak hours every week day. The eye watering cost is enough money to fund 47 primary schools3 for an entire year.

According to Zipcar’s research the worst short-school-trip offenders are in Scotland where 60% of parents living less than one mile away from the school gates drive their kids, followed by the North East with 57%. Despite its infamous congestion levels and excellent public transport, London is the third worst offender with half (50%) of parents living within one mile of their school still opting to jump in the car.

At the other end of the scale not one Welsh parent living within one mile of school admitted to driving there.

The news comes on the launch of National Walk to School Week, a campaign aimed at encouraging parents to ditch their cars for walkable school journeys.

In total, some 1.9 million mums or dads drive children to and from school on a daily basis - 30% of families with school age children. That compares with only 1.6 million who walk (25%).

Despite the number of short-school-trippers, the majority of school age parents admit that the school run is total carnage, citing difficulty parking (40%), regular traffic jams (21%), fighting parents (20%) and accidents (10%) as regular occurrences.

The research also found that whilst 30% of Britain’s school children are driven to school, 45% agreed that their children aren’t getting enough exercise. 57% of parents said they’d love to spend more quality time with their kids. .

Mark Walker, General Manager, UK at Zipcar said, "Zipcar is in full support of Walk to School Week. We are devoted to getting Britons to think smarter about how and when they use cars. Our research identifies a potential 1.1 million cars that could be taken off the road during peak times."

He continued: "There’s an astounding 27.5 million cars on Britain’s roads and 32% of households in the UK have two or more cars4. But for many the economics of ownership just don’t add up. Especially when you consider that the average car spends 96% of its life parked. Car club schemes, like Zipcar, where you can hire cars by the hour, from locations close to where you live and work, can help to fill the void for occasions where a second car truly is needed - and still leave you quids in."

Table one: Regional breakdown of worst short-school-trip offenders

Rank

Region

Percentage of parents living within 1 mile of school that drive

1

Scotland

60%

2

North East

50%

3

London

47%

4

North West

40%

5

Yorkshire

39%

6

Northern Ireland

33%

7

Midlands

33%

8

South West

26%

9

East

14%

10

South East

13%

11

Wales

0%



References

1. Based on Zipcar research carried out between 12-16th May 2013 by Censuswide; AA motoring costs 2013 and ONS Census 2011 data on family size

2. Based on Zipcar research carried out between 12-16th May 2013 by Censuswide

3. Based on mean average primary pupil spend per year and average size of UK primary school according to BBC

4. Based on RAC Foundation Keeping the nation moving May 2013 data and their mobility FAQ

About Zipcar

Zipcar is the world's leading car sharing network with operations in urban areas across the United Kingdom United States, Canada, Spain and Austria. In the UK, Zipcar operates in London, Bristol, Cambridge and Oxford and has local authority partnerships in Kent and Surrey. London is the largest Zipcar network in the UK, with over 1,500 cars across 31 London boroughs. Zipcar members benefit from: 40 miles of fuel, insurance, maintenance, roadside assistance, road tax and the Congestion Charge when travelling in London. Zipcar offers a dozen models of self-service vehicles by the hour or day to residents and businesses looking for an alternative to the high costs and hassles of owning a car. More information is available at http://www.zipcar.co.uk/. Zipcar is a subsidiary of Avis Budget Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: CAR), a global leader in car sharing and vehicle rental services.

For further information: For media enquiries, please visit this page or contact: Russell Barrow 020 3478 5044/ zipcar@theprnetwork.co.uk

follow us