Drivers more likely to pack a picnic than prepare their car

Barely 1 in 10 drivers of cars aged six years or older will get their car serviced before a long trip – despite 44% saying a breakdown is their biggest worry.

In contrast, 56% of older car owners will prepare a picnic before a long journey.

The figures, revealed (coincidentally) by car hire firm Europcar, reveal that drivers are worrying about breaking down but not doing anything to mitigate it.

With the average age of cars in British roads now topping seven years, that’s a lot of ill-prepared cars for the holiday trips many will be undertaking this weekend.

Even worse, just 1 in 5 hold roadside assistance cover should they indeed break down…

As for motorists who do make pre-journey checks, more than 8 in 10 will check the fuel but barely half will check water coolant, and only a third will check bulbs.

“It’s clear from our research that breaking down is a major concern for drivers, but it seems that many take long trips in older vehicles without doing some of the basic car maintenance checks”, said Ken McCall, Europcar UK Group MD.

“Our research revealed that the top three car checks before a long journey are fuel (82%), tyres (65%) and windscreen wash (64%).

“Checking the engine oil is topped up (63%) came lower than checking the windscreen wash…”

This weekend is set to be one of the busiest of the year on UK roads, so make sure you’re properly prepared.  Here are the top 10 biggest concerns for motorists, according to Europcar.

Top 10 travel worries

  1. Traffic and congestion
  2. Breaking down
  3. Having an accident
  4. Getting lost
  5. Driving in bad weather
  6. Driving when tired
  7. Arriving on time
  8. Keeping the kids occupied
  9. Running out of fuel
  10. Getting back pain