Driving Home For Christmas

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Driving Home For Christmas 2021 

As Chris Rea famously sang in everyone’s favourite festive road trip tune, Driving Home For Christmas is often a staple of the late December tradition for many Brits. GoodBye Car has taken a look into whether or not the general public will be making the trip home to see family and friends this year, or if they’ll be staying put and leaving the car parked in the garage.

We surveyed 1000 British people and the results were certainly interesting.

55% of Brits Aren’t Driving Home For Christmas This Year 

Much like 2020, this year has not been an ordinary one. Of the 1000 people surveyed, a massive 54.52% of Brits stated that they will not be driving home for Christmas this year, preferring to spend it without any form of travelling instead.

For most people, this will mean not seeing certain family members that they may be used to seeing over the festive period in an ‘ordinary’ year.

 

 

Less Than 8% of Brits Are Driving More Than 50 Miles For Festive Family Time 

Of the 1000 people in the GoodBye Car survey, less than 8% of the respondents stated that they were travelling over 50 miles to see loved ones this Christmas, a figure that will have plummeted in relation to years gone by (pre-2020).

-        1.3% said they will be driving between 50 and 100 miles.

-        3.6% said they will be driving between 100 and 200 miles.

-        2.4% said they will be driving over 200 miles.

 

63% of Over 65s Are Staying Put 

Looking at the breakdown of ages, it’s the over 65s that have the highest percentage of staying where they are for Christmas, which is to be expected considering the circumstances. 63% of them stated they weren’t driving home for Christmas, while 31% said that they were travelling less than 20 miles. Only 2% of the over 65s responded to say they were travelling further than 200 miles.

 

18-24 Year Olds Are Venturing A Bit Further 

The younger generation was split down the middle as to whether they are going to be travelling or not. 50% said they’re not going to be driving, while the majority of the others (34%) said they will be travelling just around the corner at under 20 miles. Of the age brackets used, 18-24 had the highest percentage of people driving between 20-50 miles (8%) and 100-200 miles (6%).

 

Who Did We Ask? 


Let’s break down the background of the people that we asked, focusing on getting an even split among male and female respondents, as well as a wide range of age groups.

 

Reasons Why People Aren’t Driving Home For Christmas 


Of the 54% of Brits that said they weren’t driving home for Christmas this year, there are several valid reasons why people might be staying put and just having a quieter festive period.

 

-        Taking a Safety First View


Although the vast majority of restrictions have been lifted in the UK at this stage, there are many people that either fall into the vulnerable category or just feel safer not travelling and being around large groups of people, which is completely understandable.

It does raise the question as to whether or not many people will decide to return to large family gatherings at Christmas time in future years, or whether they simply decide to stick with the ‘new normal’ of much more low-key celebrations.

 

-        Video Calling is in Vogue


One thing 2020 taught us was that video calling platforms such as Zoom or Facetime can be decent alternatives to in-person meet-ups. While they are not the same by any stretch of the imagination, many people are now realising they can just catch up with loved ones via a video call instead of potentially driving hundreds of miles along cold and icy roads.

 

-        Getting Used To Not Travelling


The truth for some Brits is that they’re just not used to travelling long distances anymore, and just avoid it when they can. Going ‘home’ to see parents and loved ones was a Christmas tradition in the past, but life in the modern-day means that a lot of people have families of their own to keep them company on the 25th December, such as a partner or children.

 

-        Reducing Their Carbon Footprint


With COP26 just recently in the rearview mirror, the general public is set to take more of an interest in climate change and the like. One step that some may take is to reduce or stop any long trips that aren’t absolutely necessary. Many would say that driving home for Christmas is a completely necessary trip, while for others it’s not so much. Some people have even taken the decision to sell their cars in order to reduce their carbon footprint even further.

 

-        The Weather is Not Ideal for Driving


A big part of the reason why people don’t want to start their engines in the winter months is that the roads may not be completely safe for driving. The weather can be unpredictable at times, and when the cold snap starts it can lead to ice on the roads, with the number of accidents increasing. A lot of people can be put off driving, but if you can predict the weather then you should be able to plan your journey safely.

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When Is The Best Day To Travel?
 

Looking at the weather in previous years, we can take an estimate as to when the best time to drive home for Christmas is. We’ve taken a few things into consideration for this projection, including when the roads will be safest and free from ice and snow, in order to give yourself the easiest trip possible.

We looked into the weather in the UK for the previous 5 years, taking into account the average weather type and temperature for each day of the calendar. Judging by this, we’ve created an estimate of how the weather will look in December 2021

 

 

Local Weather Breakdown
 

GoodBye Car has also taken a look through specific weather for individual regions of the UK, with the following predictions for the weather in 2021, taking the last 5 years of data into account:

Predicted December Weather

 

North East

12th - Cloudy

13th - Cloudy

14th - Sunny with Clouds

15th - Cloudy

16th - Chilly

17th - Cloudy

18th - Cool

19th - Cool with Clouds

20th - Cloudy

21st - Fog

22nd - Cloudy

23rd - Sunny

24th - Sunny with Clouds

25th - Cloudy

 

North West

12th - Cloudy

13th - Rain

14th - Cloudy

15th - Sunny with Clouds

16th - Cool

17th - Rain

18th - Sunny

19th - Sunny with Clouds

20th - Rain

21st - Cloudy

22nd - Cloudy

23rd - Sunny with Rain

24th - Cloudy

25th - Cloudy

 

East Midlands

12th - Cloudy

13th - Cloudy

14th - Sunny with Clouds

15th - Cloudy

16th - Cool and Sunny

17th - Sunny

18th - Cool and Cloudy

19th - Cloudy

20th - Cloudy

21st - Cloudy

22nd - Sunny with Clouds

23rd - Rain

24th - Cloudy

25th - Cloudy

 

West Midlands

12th - Cloudy

13th - Rain

14th - Sunny

15th - Sunny

16th - Rain

17th - Sunny with Clouds

18th - Sunny with Rain

19th - Cloudy

20th - Sunny with Rain

21st - Cloudy

22nd - Cloudy

23rd - Sunny with Rain

24th - Cloudy

25th - Cloudy

 

Yorkshire & The Humber

12th - Rain

13th - Rain

14th - Cool

15th - Fog

16th - Cloudy

17th - Mild with Fog

18th - Cloudy

19th - Fog

20th - Fog

21st - Cloudy

22nd - Mild

23rd - Rain

24th - Chilly

25th - Cool

 

East of England

12th - Sunny with Rain

13th - Cloudy

14th - Mild

15th - Rain

16th - Sunny

17th - Sunny with Rain

18th - Sunny with Clouds

19th - Mild and Sunny

20th - Mild

21st - Cloudy

22nd - Sunny with Clouds

23rd - Rain

24th - Mild

25th - Cloudy

 

London

12th - Cloudy

13th - Mild with Clouds

14th - Mild

15th - Mild

16th - Cloudy

17th - Rain

18th - Cloudy

19th - Cloudy

20th - Cloudy

21st - Cloudy

22nd - Cloudy

23rd - Cloudy

24th - Cloudy

25th - Cloudy

 

South East

12th - Cloudy

13th - Mild with Clouds

14th - Mild

15th - Mild

16th - Cloudy

17th - Rain

18th - Cloudy

19th - Cloudy

20th - Cloudy

21st - Cool and Cloudy

22nd - Cloudy

23rd - Cloudy

24th - Mild with Clouds

25th - Cloudy

 

South West

12th - Mild with Clouds

13th- Mild with Rain

14th - Mild with Clouds

15th - Mild

16th - Mild

17th - Mild with Clouds

18th - Rain

19th - Mild

20th - Mild

21st - Cloudy

22nd - Mild with Clouds

23rd - Rain

24th - Mild

25th - Rain

 

Scotland

12th - Fog

13th - Mild

14th - Mild with Rain

15th - Mild

16th - Mild with Sun

17th - Mild

18th - Cloudy

19th - Cloudy

20th - Cool

21st - Mild with Rain

22nd - Mild

23rd - Mild

24th - Mild

25th - Rain

 

Wales

12th - Cool and Mild

13th - Cloudy

14th - Cool

15th - Mild with Rain

16th - Mild with Rain

17th - Mild

18th - Rain

19th - Mild with Rain

20th - Cloudy

21st - Cloudy

22nd - Cloudy

23rd - Rain and Cloudy

24th - Cloudy

25th - Cloudy

 

Northern Ireland

12th - Rain

13th - Rain

14th - Mild with Rain

15th - Cool

16th - Cool

17th - Cloudy

18th - Mild with Rain

19th - Cloudy

20th - Mild

21st - Cloudy

22nd - Cloudy

23rd - Mild with Clouds

24th - Mild with Clouds

25th - Rain

 

If the last few years are anything to go by, we can’t expect a white Christmas in the UK in 2021, and the chances are it will be dark and cloudy when the 25th of December rolls around.

 

Car Games To Keep Children Entertained

 

Road Trip Secret Santa

This one will only work if you’re making a stop along the way, but there’s plenty of fun to be had. Before you set off, set a price limit and draw names out of a hat for Secret Santa, with the idea being each person has to find a gift for their chosen family member at a service station shop. This combines the spirit of Christmas with a fun scavenger hunt task for the kids.

 

Christmas Movie Marathon

Get everyone ready for the festive shenanigans by playing the Christmas Movie Marathon game. Basically, everyone takes turns naming popular Christmas movies and continue taking turns until a player can’t think of any more. That person is then eliminated, and the game continues until there’s only one person left, who of course is the winner. No googling allowed!

 

20 Questions

This can be played a few different ways. One is for someone to choose something, such as a famous person or thing, and the others have to ask 20 questions to try and figure out who they’re thinking of. If they can’t guess it after 20 questions or less, the thinker wins. Another way to play is more of a ‘getting to know you’ game, which may be a great way to learn more about your kids and their interests. Example questions could include ‘if you could be any fictional character who would you be?’ or ‘if you could only eat one food for the rest of your life what would it be?’ Kids tend to come up with some funny answers for these.

 

The Alphabet Game

A timeless classic, have someone decide on a topic and everyone in the car has to name something related to the topic that begins with each letter of the alphabet. For example, the topic is Disney Characters, so the first person says Ariel (beginning with A), then the next person says Belle (B), the next Cinderella (C) until you reach the letter Z. If anyone can’t think of one for their letter, they lose! The good thing about this game is that you can simply change the topic and it’s brand new again. A Christmas topic is a good way to give it a festive feel, such as A = Angels, B = Bells, C= Carol Singers etc.

 

Christmas Story Time

Get the whole family involved in a collaborative effort, as the first person in the family starts the story with ‘One Christmas…’, with the next person continuing the story with their own sentence. This continues with a sentence from each person until the Christmas story reaches an ending. Make sure to keep a recording of the story for future reference, and to have a good laugh at!

 

The Quiet Game

When the adults are looking for a bit of peace and quiet, what better game than this? Simply challenge the kids to stay quiet without making any noise, and whoever doesn’t speak for the longest time wins! It’s likely that you’ll need an incentive for this, so make sure you have a prize such as a fast-food or sweets stop for the winner.

 

Name The Song

All you need for this is an Aux cable and a speaker. The people in the car take it in turns to play a song, or a series of songs, and the rest of the family have to guess the artist and song name. As well as learning about everyone’s different music tastes, it’s a fun and competitive guessing game, as seen on BBC’s The Hit List. When on the road for Christmas, make it festive by limiting it to just Christmas songs.

 

Spot The Car

Another simple and easy to play game, all you have to do is to name a particular car (such as a Red Audi TT) before the journey begins, and the first one to spot it while out on the road wins. It’ll keep the kids distracted and focused, at least until the chosen car is spotted!