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What is the cost of providing a dedicated taxi service to your children?

18 October 2016 Blog

Parents provide a dedicated taxi service to their children. But how much time is it taking up and how much money is it costing? Motorpoint spoke to a cross section of parents to find out more

“Most parents who do drive their children make ten or more trips a week, clocking up on average between sixteen and twenty miles weekly (or roughly 1,000 miles a year)”

It’s no secret that parents provide a committed taxi service to their children. The school run, friend’s birthday parties and football training are all regular fares for a lot of mums and dads – but just how many miles are being racked up a year on these trips and how much time is spent in the family car? 

We decided to survey over 750 parents across the UK to get the answers and find out just what they’re putting in, in terms of time, money and mileage every week.

The results were startling revealing that on a weekly basis, almost half of all parents say they spend too long giving lifts, with a fifth stating it's too expensive, and the same number spending over two hours every week. Parents doing the school run were the ones who seemed to be driving their kids the most, with journeys tending to be most demanded service from the taxi of mum and dad.

Most parents who do drive their children make ten or more trips a week, clocking up on average between sixteen and twenty miles weekly (or roughly 1,000 miles a year). However, some parents regularly do a lot more than this, with 28% travelling more than 31 miles per week. Those in the highest mileage annual mileage bracket of 40 miles per week and over could be clocking up almost a whopping 50,000 miles till their children reach the national driving age of 17. Translate that into cold harsh cash and you're looking at well into five figures based on current petrol prices. 

Furthermore, the financial implications of driving their children led 17% of parents to comment that it was a considerable strain on household income. In addition to the financial implications, the time spent giving lifts was also brought up by many parents with a fifth of parents spend between 45 minutes to an hour every week doing the school run, while a similar number spend over two hours.

Despite all of this, there is no disputing that some of the best childhood memories are made in the family car so even though such a high percentage of parents say they’d rather spend less time, we suspect secretly that many might miss these trips if they were gone.

As part of the research into their driving habits, we also asked parents to share stories of funny things their children had said in the family car. The best 20 anecdotes can be seen in a photo series above.

* Research based on a survey of 750 adults in the UK in October 2016