Britain is on course to become a nation of car-sharers, according to AA Insurance research published today. Almost half (47%) of the population are now considering car-sharing, and it seems that the cost of petrol is the key reason.
What's more, 60% of the 5.5 million Brits who already car-share admit that their primary reason is to save money on petrol costs. (By contrast, only a third (34%) car-share in order to help reduce emissions - strong evidence that the credit crunch is currently influencing people's behaviour over green issues.)
AA Insurance undertook research with over 2,000 people in the UK, looking into why people do and don't car-share. The most common reasons for car-sharing include social occasions such as going to the pub (54%) and driving to and from work (34%). Sharing long journeys was also a popular choice (32%).
Edmund King, President of the AA, said: "Car sharing is something that we really believe in - not only is it a good way to reduce emissions and congestion on the road, but can also save on motoring costs. There is huge scope to become more of a car-sharing nation and our research suggests that we could see a big increase, especially if Government proposals for ‘high occupancy vehicle' or ‘car sharing' lanes on some busy commuter routes go ahead."
Whilst most car-sharers are considerate and well-behaved, the AA's research also discovered that some drivers let doubts about their potential passenger's manners put a stop to their good intentions. So they have helpfully put together a list of top car-sharer annoyances and drawn up some car-share etiquette to help motorists make the transition...
1. Lateness (72%) - Ensure that you set your alarm earlier and leave extra time before you meet your car sharer
2. Criticising driving (42%) - Keep quiet if you do not agree with the car sharers driving habits. If they are particularly dangerous, perhaps bring it up at another point when you are not in the car
3. Putting your feet on dashboard/seat (39%) - Even if you put your feet on your own dashboards, other people may not appreciate this so be mindful of this in other cars
4. Loud telephone conversations (35%) - Put your phone on silent and try to refrain from telephone calls. If you do have to make calls, ask the driver first
5. Eating in the car (29%) - Eat your breakfast before you get in the car! Food will not only make a mess, but it can be smelly too
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