Millennials Driving Less and Worried About Cost of Car Ownership

Independent Study of 18 to 34-Year Olds Reveals Demand for Alternative Transportation Options

Social Media Identified as a Key Factor in Driving Less

Nov 22, 2010, 10:00 ET from Zipcar, Inc.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Nov. 22, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Almost half of all 18 to 34-year-old drivers are driving less, and nearly two-thirds would drive less if alternative transportation options were available, according to an independent study commissioned by Zipcar, Inc., the world's largest car sharing service.

The study of licensed drivers conducted in October by KRC Research revealed that 45 percent of Millennials (ages 18 to 34) said they had consciously made an effort to reduce how much they drive, and 64 percent would drive less if alternative options including public transportation, car sharing or convenient carpooling (ridesharing) were available in their area.  

When only the 25 to 34 age group is considered (excluding college-age students) 67 percent say they would drive less if other options were available.

The most significant reason given for reduced driving was the high cost associated with owning a car, with 80 percent of Millennials saying it can be difficult to own a car in the current economy because of the high cost of car payments, gas, parking and maintenance.

"Millennials recognize the limited value of paying so much for something they use so little. They want the freedom to drive, but reject the financial burden of car ownership," said Scott Griffith, chairman and CEO of Zipcar.  "We believe this study confirms what many people are saying about Collaborative Consumption as a new economic model -- that new technologies and services make it possible to have access without ownership."

Social media is also a key factor in Millennials driving less often.  For example, more than half (54 percent) of Millennials said they choose to spend time online in social networks with friends instead of driving to visit them, compared to 46 percent for 35 to 44-year olds, 34 percent for 45 to 55-year olds, and only 18 percent for 55-year olds and older.

Concerns about the cost of car ownership outweighed environmental concerns, but Millennials were more likely than other age groups to drive less to protect the environment, with nearly half (45 percent) saying they drive less to protect the environment compared to 39 percent of 35 to 44-year olds, 37 percent of 45 to 54-year olds.  Those over 55 seemed more aligned with Millennials with 42 percent saying they drive less to protect the environment.  

The study included 1,025 adults age 18 and over, of which 966 were licensed drivers.  It was conducted between Oct. 7 and Oct. 11, 2010, and utilized quotas for age, gender and region based on the national Census. The survey results are also available at:

About Zipcar

Zipcar is the world's leading car-sharing service with more than 500,000 members and 8,000 vehicles in urban areas and college campuses throughout the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. Zipcar offers more than 30 makes and models of self-service vehicles by the hour or day to residents and businesses looking for an alternative to the high costs and hassles of owning a car. More information is available at

Zipcar and the Zipcar logo are trademarks of Zipcar, Inc. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners.

SOURCE Zipcar, Inc.