This year’s pandemic has affected just about every corner of our lives. Naturally when we were all locked down there was minimal vehicle usage yet as things have slowly opened back up, we have seen a a much different approach to the usage of vehicles and of public transport. Naturally there are measures in place on public transport but there is still a lot of fear that many have about being cooped up with strangers.

To find out more about how habits have changed, the team at Car Lease UK asked 400 Britons about their vehicle usage post-lockdown, and the results make for some interesting reading for sure.

Some Expected Stuff

Prior to reading these results I was pretty convinced that the large majority of people would prefer to use their own car now than using public transport. Naturally there is a real fear which people have of the virus and that is why they prefer a situation where they are in control, such as being in their own car. Of all those asked, a whopping 92% said that they would much prefer to use their own vehicle than public transport. Those who preferred to use public transport did so based on cost and environmental reasons.

Another expected result was the percentage of people who said that they would take hand sanitizer and a mask with them in the car. There were 87% who agreed that hand sanitizer would be required and 85% who would take a mask.

Surprising Findings

Something which was rather surprising is the number of vehicle owners who have been giving their vehicles some love during this lockdown. Of those who were polled, some 60% of them said that they had been vacuuming their vehicles and a 65% of them had washed their vehicles during lockdown. I suppose that although the vehicles weren’t being used, the boredom of quarantine probably made even a bit of car cleaning look exciting.


As to whether or not this will be a lasting trend remains to be seen and may possibly depend, as so much does, on the arrival of a vaccine. Just under 38% of those who were polled said that they principally use their vehicle for commuting. Given that so many, especially office workers, are not yet back to work, the use of vehicles amongst that 38% remains low.

New Normal

Any hopes of going back to normal in the coming months or even years appears to be optimistic. What this year has taught us is that in order to get back to any form of normality, we have to adapt to what is being seen as a new normal. This will of course have an impact on vehicle use and there is going to be a tough debate to be had given the increased usage of public transport for environmental purposes. The more single vehicles there are on the road, the more carbon emissions we create, yet packed trains and buses will be highly contagious with regards to the virus.

As with so many things related to Covid-19, we will have to see what the coming months bring with regards to a vaccine.