Changing driving behaviour among both young and old revealed

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New study reveals the generational differences between young and old when it comes to driving

A recent study by the Independent Transport Commission (ITC) shows new trends in how people travel around England. It’s shown that fewer young people are using cars to get around, while older people are driving more than ever.

The study also shows that more women over 60 are driving their cars more frequently, while men under 35 are more likely to steer away from using cars.

Who and how are people travelling today?

Overall, English residents are making fewer trips per person, with the number of travellers decreasing by 15% between 1995 and 2014. Despite fewer people travelling, the average trip distance of all modes of transportation has increased by 10%, with the average trip time increasing by nearly 15%.

Traditionally there’s been a significant gap between the rich and poor in miles driven, however according to the ICT’s study that gap is now narrowing. For drivers who fall under the richest income bracket, miles driven have fallen by 10% between 1996 and 2014 (on average 4,500 miles per year), while drivers from the poorest income have increased their miles driven by almost 20% (on average 1,200 per year).

When it comes to age, the study also shows that young men under the age of 35 have halved their miles driven between 1996 and 2014 to approximately 3,700 miles driven per year. On the contrary, women over 60 have nearly doubled their miles driven over the same period to about 1,800 per year.

In London specifically, there’s also been a decrease in distance travelled per person, falling by almost a third in outer London and by more than half in inner London.

Dr Niblett, director of the ITC, explained, “For young adults, cars are increasingly viewed as utilitarian appliances, rather than aspirational goods. And there are also growing differences in travel patterns between rural and urban areas."

More people are taking the train

There’s also a significant increase in people catching the train, despite the drastic increase in fare prices by 25% since 1995. ITC’s study shows that there’s been a sharp rise in average miles travelled per person in England, due to more ‘new’ travellers choosing rail over bus or car and not just existing customers making more or longer trips via rail.

Will you be travelling abroad in the coming year? Here’s what you need to know should you take your car outside of the UK.

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