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Sitting in traffic costs families £146 per year

UK motorists are going nowhere fast, and it’s costing us a pretty penny.

Everyone knows the cost motoring has skyrocketed over the years. If it’s not insurance, congestion charges or the increasing cost of fuel, it’s taxes, servicing and maintenance — or the extortionate price of service station snacks. Now, a study has calculated you don’t actually need to be driving to spend money — you can also waste cash just sitting in traffic — quite a lot of it, as it happens. 

The total cost of fuel, time and maintenance is £4.4 billion
The total cost of fuel, time and maintenance is £4.4 billion

The study, by traffic information firm Inrix and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr), analysed queues in the UK’s 18 biggest urban areas, including Newcastle, Edinburgh, Liverpool and Birmingham. It revealed UK motorists spend 40 hours a year crawling bumper-to-bumper.

While stationary, drivers waste £441 million on wasted fuel, £2.79 billion on lost productivity and £1.19 billion on indirect costs to the family.

It doesn’t stop there. Motorists also fork out additional cash due to damage incurred from wear and tear to idling engines. 

With 30 million drivers in the UK, the average cost incurred per driver is just shy of £150 – £146.60 to be exact – which is a significant chunk of household income with two parents and two teenage drivers.

The Department For Transport has reported that number of vehicles on the road this year has increased 2.3% on last year’s figures to 77 billion vehicles. Despite urban traffic levels only increasing slightly, motorway traffic is definitely on the up. 

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