• Drivers also avoid city centres, heavy traffic and driving abroad
  • Older drivers much more comfortable with tricky parking manoeuvres than younger drivers
  • Women drivers avoid more driving situations than male drivers

A Censuswide survey*, on behalf of InsuretheGap.com, an independent provider of GAP (Guaranteed Asset Protection) car insurance, of over 1,500 UK drivers identifies the top situations that drivers avoid.
Older drivers are much more likely to be comfortable with driving manoeuvres, says the survey, than younger drivers who will try to avoid tricky parking situations. For instance, drivers under 35 are twice as likely to try to avoid parallel parking, reversing into a parking bay or reversing round a corner than over 55s.

Men and women drivers are also shown to have differences in their avoidance tactics, with women drivers more likely to avoid scenarios if they can.

The top 14 situations drivers avoid are:

  1. Driving in bad weather conditions – 73% avoid this (men 66% and women 77%)
  1. Driving in foreign countries – 72% avoid this (men 63% and women 80%), which is good news for the UK staycation sector.
  1. Driving in heavy traffic – 56% avoid this (men 52% and women 58%)
  1. Parking on the opposite side of the road – 54% avoid this (men 51% and women 57%).  74% of under 24s avoid this, compared to only 44% of over 45s.
  1. Driving in city centres – 53% avoid this (men 47% and women 57%)
  1. Parking on a hill – 53% avoid this (men 46% and women 59%). Over 55s are three times less likely to avoid parking on a hill than under 25s and half as likely as drivers aged, 25 – 34.
  1. Reversing around a corner – 50% avoid this (men 47% and women 53%). Again, older age groups are much more likely to be comfortable with this manoeuvre, with only about a third of over 45s avoiding it, compared to over 60% of under 34s.
  1. Parallel Parking – 50% avoid this (men 43% and women 56%). 64% of under 24s avoid parallel parking, compared to only a third of over 45s.
  1. Reversing into a parking bay – 42% avoid this (men 37% and women 46%). Over 50% of under 34s avoid this, compared to roughly a third of over 45s.
  1. Driving on the Motorway – 37% avoid this (men 29% and women 45%). Almost half of under 34s avoid the motorway, compared to only a quarter of over 45s.
  1.  Driving on country roads – 39% avoid this (men 33% and women 45%)
  1. Driving with a car full of passengers – 39% avoid this (men 36% and women 40%)
  1. Three-point turns – 38% avoid this (men 37% and women 39%)
  1. Navigating a roundabout – 27% avoid this (men 25% and women 30%). 50% of under 24s avoid roundabouts, compared with only 9% of over 55s.

Ben Wooltorton, Chief Operating Officer at InsuretheGap.com said: “These findings show that you’re certainly not alone if you like to plan routes which avoid motorways, city centres, or country roads, although this might make finding a route challenging. Also spare a thought for those trying to find a parking space, particularly young drivers, who try to avoid parallel parking, parking on a hill or reversing into a space.

“Also, the quarter of drivers who wish to avoid roundabouts would be well advised to avoid Milton Keynes which has 124 roundabouts, the most of any UK town, so plenty of scope for driving in circles there, particularly if you’re looking for the perfect parking spot,” continued Wooltorton.