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More walking but we are still dependent on the car

One in ten will try to walk more in 2019

But 86% of drivers still drive more than 20 miles from home at least once a month

20 December 2018

One in ten drivers say they will try to walk more next year and 3% say they’ll try to cycle more, in their one New Year’s resolution about their driving, according to the AA.

But there’s little prospect of drivers being ready to give up their cars altogether as less than 1% of drivers say they never drive more than 20 miles from home by car, whilst 86% drive more than 20 miles at least once per month, according to the new AA research.

The AA-Populus survey of 22,229 drivers in December 2018 also shows that more than a third (36%) drive further than 20 miles every day (16%) or every few days (20%). The analysis shows it would be very difficult for most drivers to swap their car for walking and cycling.

Busy city centre dual carriageway junction

How often do you drive more than 20 miles?

Our survey question asked: "How often, if at all, would you say that you drive more than 20 miles from your home by car?"

Overall response
  • A few times a month 22%
  • Once every few days 20%
  • Once a week 17%
  • Every day 16%
  • Once a month 11%
  • Once every few months 11%
  • About once a year 1%
  • Less than once a year 1%
  • Never 1%
Age differences

The trends varied by age with younger drivers more likely to drive 20 miles every day than older drivers.

  • 18-24 year olds 27% drive more than 20 miles from home every day
  • 25-34 year olds 28%
  • Over 65s 5%
National and regional variations

There were also some significant national and regional variations:

  • Northern Ireland 23% drive more than 20 miles from home every day
  • North East 19%
  • Scotland 17%
  • South East 16%
  • London 11%
Most are still dependent on the car

Commenting on the survey, Edmund King, AA president, said: “Whilst many drivers have good intentions to walk and cycle more in the New Year, our car travel analysis shows that most drivers are still dependent on the car for longer journeys.

“Less than 1% of drivers never drive more than 20 miles from home by car whilst the vast majority drive that distance at least once a month.

Less than 1% of drivers never drive more than 20 miles from home by car whilst the vast majority drive that distance at least once a month
Edmund King, AA president

“Often New Year’s resolutions, like going to the gym, don’t last long but if one in eight drivers stick to their promise to walk or cycle more, it would be beneficial to their health and help reduce congestion.”


Populus interviewed 22,229 respondents between 11 and 17 December 2018

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