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72% of UK drivers shifted to active travel to save money, study finds

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New research by road safety charity Brake and insurance company AXA UK reveals that 72% of UK residents have switched from cars, motorcycles or public transport to walking or cycling for short journeys to save money.

The study – How the cost-of-living crisis affects road safety – asked car drivers and motorcyclists last March how the cost-of-living crisis has affected the journeys they make.

It highlights the tough decisions drivers are facing every day when getting into their vehicles. 

Of the 2,000 people surveyed, 10% said they had driven or ridden their vehicles with warning lights on the dashboard; 10% said they had driven or ridden with a broken light in the dark; and 18% had driven with known tyre defects as a way to save money. The latter figure is a 7% increase from the research conducted by Brake a decade previously. 

Nearly two-thirds (62%) are worried about being able to afford timely repairs to their vehicles. 

Brake highlighted that vehicle defects contribute to nearly 500 people being killed or seriously injured on UK roads every year.

In January, shared micromobility operator Dott, which is one of three operators that is part of London’s e-scooter trials, found that fuel price rises and increased living costs led to a spike in demand for its services.

Zag spoke with Dott’s Co-Founder and COO Maxim Romain, who said: “Dott’s shared e-scooters and e-bikes offer a low cost alternative to car travel, either on their own or combined with public transport. And users don’t need to worry about the costs of unexpected maintenance. Our teams of in-house, specialist mechanics ensure that our vehicles are ready when they’re needed, providing a safe and reliable service.” 

Tara Foley, Retail CEO at AXA UK&I, commented: “The cost-of-living crisis has impacted us all over the last year, and this research shows that when it comes to transport, we are worried about the cost of having our vehicles serviced and needing repairs. At AXA UK, we aim to provide more choice, flexibility, and value. So, research like this is vital in better understanding the day-to-day challenges we’re facing and the impact.”

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