Half of cars in Estonia are not driven every day, with car use heavily dependent on where the owner lives, a study published on Tuesday reveals.
A study carried out by insurance providers If Kindlustus in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania shows that 49 percent of car owners in Estonia use their vehicle every day, 19 percent use their vehicle for five or six days a week, 10 percent three or four days, 9 percent one or two days and 14 percent less often than once a week.
Men take to the roads more often as 56 percent of them drive every single day, while 40 percent of women get behind the wheel every day of the week. Drivers are most numerous in the 35-44 age group, with 58 percent using their car every day. Young people between the ages of 18 and 34 are the least keen to drive.
Marion Meius, senior damages expert for If Baltic, said that people who live in rural areas use their vehicles most often (58 percent every day). The indicator is 40 percent in major cities.
"People's needs, distances and public transport coverage all play a role. People in rural areas drive for many more kilometers than city dwellers. It is often one's place of residence that determines how they use their car," Meius said in a press release.
Nationality, level of education or income has little bearing on how people drive it turns out.
"The frequency with which people use their car is also affected by our recently altered home office habits. This is probably true rather for residents of cities who can sometimes choose whether to commute to the office or work from home. A rural area resident might depend on their vehicle to a greater degree," Meius suggested.
The study also found that newer cars tend to get driven more often, while engine type also plays a part.
"Daily drivers most often run on LPG (65 percent), CNG (60 percent) or diesel (54 percent), while less than half of electric, gasoline and hybrid vehicles are driven every day. Cars that run on natural gas and diesel are usually driven by people who need to get around more and also do more kilometers annually. Growing fuel prices might also play a part in driving habits, at least temporarily. People consider whether and which trips they need to take. Again, I believe this is rather true for city dwellers," Meius added.
Compared to their southern neighbors, Estonians are rather less likely to drive every day. 23 percent of Estonians drive once or twice a week or even less often. Lithuania has the most everyday drivers at 56 percent.
The study polled a little over 1,000 people from Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. If Kindlustus did not specify the time period.
Editor: Marcus Turovski