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Just 27% of drivers will return to their pre-pandemic driving habits

  • 6% of households say they no longer need a car
  • The end of the commute – biggest positive from pandemic for 17% of people

New research1, commissioned by GoCompare Car Insurance, shows that once the crisis subsides, only 27% of Brits will return to their pre-pandemic driving habits.  

The first National lockdown, which began on 23 March 2020, saw traffic reduce dramatically.  With quieter roads, gyms and other fitness and sporting facilities shut, many people took to cycling and walking for their daily exercise.  The research found that 27% of Brits are walking and/or cycling more than before the pandemic, with 11% saying that they feel fitter due to taking more exercise. 

The switch from cars to foot is likely to continue post pandemic restrictions.  For 29% of those surveyed, walking more was one of the biggest positives to come out of the crisis.  Just under a fifth (18%) said that in future, they will stop using their car for short journeys which they could walk.

Over the last year, with travel restrictions in place, our lives have centred around our homes and immediate area.  As a result, 6% of Brits have realised that they don’t need a car, 4% said they have already sold their car because they weren’t using it as much, while 6% are considering doing so.  Time spent in enforced lockdowns has also led to some people thinking about the environment, 13% of Brits say lockdown has made them think about living more sustainably and how they use their car.  16% said they plan to use their car less in the future.

Lockdown restrictions have forced many people to work from home.  For some, flexible working (12%) and not having to commute to work (17%) have been big benefits arising out of the pandemic.

Over the last year, Covid-19 has caused both a public health and financial crisis.  As a result of steps to manage the spread of the disease, many people have been either laid-off, furloughed or seen a drop in their income.  According to the survey, 4% of people say they can no-longer afford to run a car.

Commenting on the research, Lee Griffin, CEO and one of the founders of GoCompare, said, “In the last year, we’ve all had to dramatically change the way we work, exercise, socialise and travel.  The drastic restrictions on mobility have clearly led some people to think about their driving habits and the pros and cons of using their cars, especially for shorter trips.             

“As the UK opens up again, it remains to be seen whether, as far as our relationship with our cars are concerned, everything, or nothing has changed.”   

Lee Griffin continued, “Temporary financial and practical measures continue to be in place to help motorists struggling with insurance costs and finance repayments.  Drivers facing financial difficulties should talk to their insurer as soon as possible rather than letting the problem compound itself. 

“We also encourage motorists to make a note of their renewal date this year and set aside some time to shop around.  It only takes a few minutes and, there are hundreds of pounds of savings to be made.  Currently, drivers shopping around for cover with us could save up to £240 on their insurance and benefit from our free £250 excess cover2.”

For more information on Coronavirus and your money visit:   https://www.gocompare.com/coronavirus-insurance-money/


For further information please contact:

Gordon, Jason or Liz at MAW Communications on 01603 505 845

Keep up-to-date with GoCompare on Twitter; @GoCompare

Notes to editors

1On 8 February 2021, an online survey of 2,042 randomly selected Great British adults was executed by Maru/Blue. For comparison purposes, a probability sample of this size has an estimated margin of error (which measures sampling variability) of +/- 2.1%. The results have been weighted by age, gender, region and social grade to match the population, according to Census data. This is to ensure the sample is representative of the entire adult population of Great Britain. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

251% of consumers could achieve a saving of up to £240.64 with GoCompare car insurance based on a comparison of 31 companies. 

The £250 excess offer applies to fully comprehensive policies and is open to anyone who buys a valid car insurance policy from GoCompare during the offer period.  The policyholder must be 17 years of age or older and a permanent UK resident. The customer will qualify for the free excess protection cover for the duration of their car insurance policy (12 months max).  Excess Protection Insurance is provided by a separate policy, underwritten by AXA Assistance (UK) Ltd.

About GoCompare

GoCompare is a comparison website that enables people to compare the costs and features of a wide variety of insurance policies, financial products and energy tariffs.

It does not charge people to use its services and does not accept advertising or sponsored listings, so all product comparisons are unbiased. GoCompare makes its money through fees paid by the providers of products that appear on its various comparison services when a customer buys through the site.

When it launched in 2006, it was the first comparison site to focus on displaying policy details rather than just listing prices, with the aim of helping people to make better-informed decisions when buying their insurance. It is this approach to comparing products that secured the company an invitation to join the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) in 2008, and it is still the only comparison site to be a member of this organisation.

GoCompare has remained dedicated to helping people choose the most appropriate products rather than just the cheapest and works with Defaqto, the independent financial researcher, to integrate additional policy information into a number of its insurance comparison services. This allows people to compare up to an extra 30 features of cover.

GoCompare is part of Future Plc and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

More information can be found here www.gocompare.com or here https://www.futureplc.com/brands/.