Check the Meter: Parent Taxis Worth £19 Billion a Year - according to new research from Sainsbury’s Bank car insurance

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Parents drive 207 million miles a week taking their children to recreational events. If charged at hackney carriage rates this would total over £370 million a week according to new research from Sainsbury’s Bank car insurance.

Mums and dads in Britain provide over £19 billion worth of free taxi services to their children every year, according to new research(1) from Sainsbury’s Bank car insurance. The findings reveal that parents drive over 207 million miles a week(2) transporting their children to recreational events outside of school. If charged at hackney carriage rates this would total over £370 million(1).

The study shows that over 10 million parents devote time to driving their children around, covering an average of 20.05 miles a week(2) worth £35.80(1). In addition, parents spend an average of around one hour 32 minutes sitting in their cars waiting around for their children(2), worth another £20.40 a week(1). In total the average parent who drives their children around is worth £55.40 a week in taxi fares(1).

Sainsbury’s Bank has created an online taxi calculator which shows the amount mums and dads around the country would have to spend in taxi fares to cover the hours, minutes and miles they put in for their kids. Parents interested in calculating their own ‘cab rate’ can visit the taxi calculator on the Sainsbury's Bank Money Matters page.

Emily Fleming, Sainsbury's Car Insurance Manager said: “Parents devote a huge amount of time taking their children to various extra-curricular activities and our research reveals that on average, each parent is worth the equivalent to £55 a week in taxi fares.

"All that motoring is a significant financial commitment with parents spending an estimated £1.3 billion(3) on petrol, driving their children to social, sporting and recreational events each year. So it's worthwhile shopping around for fuel and other motoring expenses such as tyres and MOTs as you could make savings.

"To help save money on motoring we are offering new customers up to one third off their premium(4) and those who take out a new comprehensive policy will also be eligible for double Nectar points(5) on their Sainsbury's shopping and fuel for two years. Those spending £49 a week in Sainsbury’s could, over a year, earn Nectar points equivalent to the value of a week's free shopping(4)."

The study reveals that year-on-year parents have reduced the mileage they clock up taking their children to recreational events by around 10%. The distance travelled has decreased on average over 244 miles compared to the previous 12 months(2). Some parents cover huge distances ferrying their children around, with over 950,000 parents driving their children more than 50 miles a week(2).

Emily continued: "A quarter of parents(2) told us that the time spent in the car with their child strengthens their bond with 14% saying it's the best time to raise difficult issues with their kids(2). It would appear the car journey provides a real solution to the myriad of electronic distractions which may hamper conversations in the home.”

Table one: Parental taxi values around Britain
Average weekly taxi value of a parent(1)
Number of parents who drive their children around(2)
Total parental taxi value in this area(1)
North East
North West
Yorks & Humber
West Midlands
South East
South West
East Midlands
Source: Sainsbury’s Bank car insurance

For further information on Sainsbury’s car insurance, call 0800 096 1836, Sainsbury's Bank or pick up a leaflet instore.


For further information, please contact:
Ewan Robertson, Citigate Dewe Rogerson: 020 7282 2981 / Lorna Gilmour, Sainsbury’s Bank: 0131 338 2863

Notes to editors:

Sainsbury’s Bank carried out calculations based on ICM research (see footnote 2) and a survey of hackney carriage rates as set by local authorities and averaged out for each region, collected between 20-24th January 2013.

Sainsbury's Bank commissioned ICM to survey 2,005 GB adults. Respondents were interviewed by ICM in an online survey between 16th-17th January 2013. Interviews were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

Calculation based on the combined average MPG for one of Britain’s bestselling cars the Ford Fiesta 1.4 model. Petrol prices based on the latest figures available from the AA . Calculation;
Average miles driven = 20
Average MPG of a 1.4 Ford Fiesta = 49.5
Average price of a litre of unleaded petrol 132.1p
132.1ppl * 4.54 = price per gallon = £6.01
Average miles driven / Average MPG of a 1.4 Ford Fiesta =0.40
Amount spent on petrol on average by a parent driving children to recreational events = £6.01*0.40 = £2.43
Cost per parent per year = £2.43*52=£126.27
Total cost for all parents that drive children to recreational events = 10,339,000*126.27 = £1.3 billion

Up to 1/3 discount based on your circumstances and loyalty information. Sainsbury’s customers will receive a discounted rate based on information related to transactions made in Sainsbury’s supermarkets using your Nectar card. For more information go to At least 10% of Nectar customers who are Sainsbury’s shoppers will achieve the maximum discount of 1/3. Double Nectar 1) Offer available only to customers who take out a new Sainsbury’s comprehensive car insurance policy. 2) Customers must renew their policy at first renewal for double points to continue. 3) If the policy is cancelled, double points will cease from the cancellation date. 4) Only the first car insurance policy registered against each Nectar account will qualify for double points. 5) Base points on qualifying spend in Sainsbury’s will be collected as normal. A bonus equal to the total of these points each calendar month (subject to a monthly maximum of 2,500 points) will be credited to the Nectar account by the 10th of the following month, for up to 24 months from the policy cover start date. Excludes all Bonus point offers and points from Sainsbury’s Energy, Telecoms, Digital, Bank, Diets and all other Sainsbury’s services. 6) The monthly bonus will only be calculated on, and credited to, the Nectar card nominated at the time of application. The nominated card must also be used at the time of each Sainsbury’s purchase and points will not be allocated retrospectively. 7) The Nectar loyalty programme is operated independently of Sainsbury’s Bank by Aimia Coalition Loyalty UK Ltd; and the collection and use of points is governed by the Nectar Collector Rules, set out in the registration pac 8) Sainsbury’s Bank reserves the right to alter, cancel or withdraw the offer without prior notice. (6) Provided through approved repairers. Courtesy car subject to availability on Sainsbury's Car Insurance. Similar physical size and class courtesy car guaranteed on Sainsbury's Premier Cover Car Insurance.

Sainsbury's Bank:
To view our latest press releases and product information, please visit the Sainsbury's Bank media centre.

Sainsbury’s was the first major British supermarket to open a bank, commencing trading in February 1997. Benefiting from a fantastic, trusted brand that enables us to combine the shopping experience with personal finance, Sainsbury's Bank provides a range of quality products including insurances, credit cards, savings and loans. Our proposition is to make shopping more rewarding by offering customers great products at fair prices, while consistently rewarding shoppers for their loyalty and being easy to do business with at all times. Our products consistently top Best Buy tables and regularly win awards for quality, price and service.

In 2012, Sainsbury's Bank was awarded 'Best Term Assurance Provider Direct' - Moneyfacts Investment Life & Pensions; 'Best Personal Loan Provider' - Consumer Moneyfacts; 'Best Low Rate Credit Card Provider' – Moneynet; 'Best Credit Card for use abroad (Gold)' – Moneynet; 'Best Loan Provider' - Moneysupermarket Supers; 'Pet Insurance Intelligent Choice, Customer Satisfaction' - Consumer Intelligence; 'Best Personal Loan Provider' – Moneyfacts; 'Best Direct Personal Loan Provider' - Your Money Direct; 'Best Online Pet Insurance Provider' - Your Money Direct; 'Best Loans Rate' – Moneynet.

Sainsbury's Bank Plc is a joint venture between J.Sainsbury plc and Lloyds Banking Group.

Sainsbury's Bank has its own banking licence, is separately regulated by the Financial Services Authority and has an independent membership to the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.

Sainsbury's Bank plc is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA) register number 184514, except for Credit Cards & Loans where it is licensed by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) license no. 421 897.

For further information and general Sainsbury's Bank enquiries customers can call the freephone number on 0500 40 50 60 or visit the website.

Direct Line Group plc
U K Insurance Limited is the underwriter of Sainsbury's Car Insurance and are part of the Direct Line Group PLC. Direct Line Group plc (Direct Line Group) is headquartered in Bromley; it has operations in the UK, Germany and Italy.

Through its number of well-known brands Direct Line Group offers a wide range of general insurance products to consumers. These brands include; Direct Line, Churchill and Privilege. It also offers insurance services for third party brands through its Partnerships division. In the commercial sector, its NIG and Direct Line for Business operations provide insurance products for businesses via brokers or direct respectively.

In addition to insurance services, Direct Line Group continues to provide support and reassurance to millions of UK motorists through its Green Flag breakdown recovery service and Tracker stolen vehicle recovery and telematics business.

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Gillian Carmichael
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