Drivers getting behind the wheel only when they need to


It’s damned expensive, keeping a car in the current economy, and new research has found that Brits are simply avoiding using their cars unless they have to.

There aren’t too many things you can do in the current day and age to control the costs of keeping your car on the road, especially since car insurance rates keep creeping upwards. Industry experts say that rampant whiplash claims and other car insurance claims are driving premium prices upwards, leaving Brits with having to make savings elsewhere; for many, this has taken the form of simply not getting behind the wheel of your vehicle unless you absolutely have to.

It’s one thing to have to use your car to commute to work every day, either because you live in an area without good public transport links or your job is somewhere you can’t get to in that method, but it’s another altogether to not conserve petrol – especially since the price of that commodity seems to be rocketing ever upwards as well. However, petrol demand fell off in a dramatic way last month according to Customs and Excise; in fact, sales figures it their lowest in 23 years as only 1.43 billion litres were pumped into the tanks of UK vehicles – an 8.6 per cent drop year-on-year.

The AA says that UK households simply can’t afford to fill up their vehicles at their local forecourt as often as in the past, thanks to petrol price increases. February saw another price surge, seeing price per litre jump from anywhere between 8p and 10p, and while it didn’t approach the ridiculous price increase we saw in March of last year, it was still pretty abysmal if you ask me – or anyone else that was faced with rising fuel prices but stagnant wages!

If you believe it, George Osborne actually pulled the fat out of the fire for the nation’s motorists in the recently announced Budget, considering he decided to cancel a planned fuel duty rise that would have seen prices increase by yet another 3p. Cold comfort for anyone who doesn’t have a choice but to fill up on fuel, but it’s still an improvement; though I will say that sharing a ride with colleagues or co-workers has never been quite so attractive as it is at this very moment!

Either that or people are going to start just selling off their cars and investing in a nice, sturdy bicycle.  It’s good exercise after all, though I’d hate to have to ride a few miles on a bicycle to work if it’s raining out – or if you’re going down to the local Tesco to pick up some groceries!

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