Attitudes towards car use in Great-Britain

In the framework of studies related to the impact of transport on climate change, the UK Department for Transport published an article describing attitudes towards car use in Great Britain and particularly analysing the link between the following items:

- levels of car ownership and use and the factors that might impact on car use
- the extent of driving licence holding and reasons why some people do not learn how to drive
- the importance of transport issues in deciding where to live
- residential parking behaviour and experience of parking tickets
- perceptions of safety on different forms of transportThe survey consisted of more than 1,200 face-to-face interviews and led to the following conclusions:

- The most common reasons for not learning to drive were lack of interest in doing so, the availability of other forms of transport (including provision by family or friends) and the costs associated with driving

- However, the findings indicate that the recent decline in levels of driving licence holding among young people reflects a postponement in learning rather than a decision never to learn

- Over half of car driving respondents said they did not limit how much they travelled by car due to the price of petrol or the effect car travel has on the environment

- A half of car drivers never investigated other options when planning a one-off journey before deciding whether to travel by car

- Among those who had moved in the last five year, 31% said access to good transport links (public and road) were a very important consideration in deciding where to live

- Three quarters of respondents thought the car was the safest form of transport in terms of crime victimisation. Walking was most likely to be considered the safest mode in terms of accidents


- Concern about accidents had no impact on transport choices for two-thirds respondents
. Similarly concern about crime victimisation had no impact for 60% of respondents.


- Women were more likely to say concerns impacted on their travel choices than men,
particularly with regard to personal safety. Around three in ten women said they avoided travelling at certain times due to personal safety concerns.

The full survey is available on DfT website.

  • Updated : March 21, 2006

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