With disruption to travel and continuing uncertainty surrounding just what will and won’t be possible over the coming months, many families are relying on their car for a summer break. New research1 from Kwik Fit revealed that only 50% of Brits are going to take a summer holiday this year, despite the Government’s announcement that it was dropping some quarantine requirements. Only 15% of UK adults are heading overseas, while 13.1 million are opting to use their vehicle to get away for a UK break this summer.
Researchers for the UK’s largest automotive servicing and repair company asked people why they were choosing to travel by car. The most common reason given by people is that they don’t want to risk infection travelling by plane or other modes of public transport, stated by more than one in four (28%) who will be using their car. 23% think current restrictions placed on air travel and public transport are too much hassle to navigate, while 15% are concerned about flights being cancelled and 14% say they need to cut costs so using their vehicle is the most economic option available.
The 13.1 million setting off on UK roads for a domestic break will cover an average of 804 miles – a combined total of 10.6 billion holiday miles. As holidaymakers prepare to load up their vehicles, Kwik Fit is urging drivers to remember their all-important checks ahead of travel. Three million of those using their car to holiday this summer admitted to never carrying out any special checks before hitting the road.
Even the most basic checks are being neglected by many – only half of the drivers planning to travel with their car this summer check tyre pressure (54%), screen wash levels (50%) or oil levels (49%) before setting off.
Other simple checks on vehicles are being missed too. Just one in four (23%) check the condition of their spare wheel, only 32% check brake fluid, 33% look at coolant levels and just 39% check their tyre tread depth.
Worryingly, in spite of the Government ending the automatic extension of MOT expiry dates, fewer than one in five drivers (19%) planning a trip with their car validate its MOT ahead of doing so. Not only is the MOT a legal requirement, the test is even more important for those drivers who don’t make their own checks as it can highlight significant safety issues.
South West England, Scotland and Wales are the top three hot spots for UK holidaymakers, with more Brits heading for these destinations as there are going on all overseas holidays combined. North West England and Yorkshire and Humber complete the top five UK destinations
Roger Griggs, communications director at Kwik Fit, said: “Many people will have had to completely rethink their travel plans this summer and have been looking at the best way to ensure their family can still get a break. With so many homes becoming the main workplace and learning area over the past few months, it is only natural people want to get a change of scenery and routine. While we understand the need to get away, we want people to do so safely.
“It’s clear from this research that the roads are going to be extremely busy so the last thing anyone will want is the added hassle of car trouble. Carrying out a few checks on a vehicle before travelling a distance could prevent any unwanted delays on the side of the road. Our centres offer a free car health check for anyone not comfortable doing it themselves.”
To get more information on free vehicle health checks at Kwik Fit or book an appointment visit the website.
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