Now that increasing numbers of people are being vaccinated, companies are starting to reconsider the return to office working. But what does this mean for commuting and commuter cars?
Well, the post lockdown commuting landscape could look different in a number of ways which are as-yet undetermined. However, it’s worth being aware of what commuting might look like in the coming months. With this in mind, you can make a decision on whether or not to keep hold of your commuting car, or make the move to other forms of public transport.
Changing peak travel on public transport
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, public transport across the UK has had to spring into action. Trains, trams, buses, and underground networks have continued to work for essential workers who’ve had to attend jobs throughout the pandemic. This has resulted in a dramatically intensified cleaning schedule so that commuters have felt and continue to feel safe.
As office workers anticipate a return to at least some in-office working, public transport will have to adapt to remain an environment that people feel safe using. The impact of changes to standard working practice have already been felt by these networks. Due to workers attempting to spread the travel time out to maintain social distancing, peak travel hours have moved from 7am to as early as 5am
Flexible working hours have also been implemented as a post lockdown work strategy. This is in order to manage rush hour on roads and public transport.
Moving away from public transport
Public transport has been a lifeline for some during the pandemic. However, Motor One reports that 76% of those who had used public transport pre-pandemic are now keen to use different methods of travel to get into work. This may result in increased commuters using personal vehicles to make their commute. The importance of a comfortable commuting car will therefore increase. Consequentially, drivers are more willing to splash extra cash on a vehicle that will get them to work in comfort – and avoid public transport.
Alternatively, commuters might avoid the perils of public transport by turning to cycling in order to get to work. This is particularly likely in larger cities like London. These are consistently undergoing huge infrastructural changes to ensure the city is as cycling-friendly as possible. Reuters reports that city planners are becoming increasingly focussed on diversifying ways of commuting. For example, introducing e-scooters to planning smart roads so as to prevent CO2 levels from soaring. If increased numbers of commuters opt to use these diverse methods of travelling to work, a commuting car will become a less important feature in these commuters’ lives.
The commuting car: downsize or upsize?
While many people are aiming to avoid public transport post-lockdown, there’s also the issue that commuting as a whole may remain at lower levels. As reported by City AM, recent research by Transport Focus has shown that commuters believe their jobs will become increasingly home-based with limited travel into offices. With a greater number of people working from home, the commuting car could become a less important feature in some workers’ lives.
It’s possible that drivers will look to downsize their vehicle as a result. After all, there’s no point in paying premium on policies or regularly upgrading your car’s model if you’re less likely to be driving it regularly.
People Management has even floated the possibility of employers lending cars. This would allow employees to travel to and from work safely if they are neither able nor willing to commute via public transport. The discussion also included the suggestion that employers provide facilities such as free parking. As a result, the commute would be less stressful for workers who choose or have to drive into work.
A note on car insurance
If you’re planning to make the move to commuting via car, don’t forget to check your car insurance policy. You need to be clear that you’re covered for commuting journeys, even if your travel is as short as driving to the nearby station.
Talk to My Car Credit today
Whether you’re looking to downsize to a fuel-efficient vehicle for commuting, or just invest in a new car so you don’t need to get public transport, My Car Credit is on hand to help. Our car finance calculator can give you a clear estimate of how much commuting car finance will cost based on the amount you want to borrow, the timeframe and a broad idea of your credit rating.
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