Despite Working From Home, Many People Expect To Drive More Miles In 2021

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, more and more people have started working from home. A few unsurprising statistics have emerged this year:

  • 33% of consumers expect to work from home for most of the year
  • 9 out of 10 consumers will do more shopping online for routine household purchases this year

Yet, here’s a surprising statistic: 32% of consumers expect to drive more in 2021 than they did before COVID hit. Here’s another surprising statistic: 24% of consumers plan to buy another vehicle for their household in 2021.

Why is that? You’d think that the pandemic would keep people holed up at home more often. So why would they need to drive more, let alone buy another car? We can think of two good reasons:

1. Driving Is A Good Way To Socially Distance

drive alone

Did you know that COVID almost killed the demand for public transportation? In 2020, there was a sharp decline in demand for public transportation. By May 2020, the demand had dropped by 80%. This compelled public transit departments in many US cities to cut their routes. This left many bus and train riders to turn to other options, such as driving their own cars.

There are two main reasons there was a sharp decline in demand for public transportation:

  1. People no longer felt safe traveling with strangers, so they started driving their own cars.
  2. People started working from home, so they didn’t need to commute to work anymore.

Many of those who needed to travel felt that driving was a good way to socially distance. They became more reliant on their car instead of:

  • Public transportation
  • Ride sharing
  • Air travel

We’re well into 2021, and consumers have become accustomed to driving everywhere.

2. People Are Itching To Travel Again After The Pandemic Ends

on the road

With an increase of vaccine availability, and more relaxed regulations, expect to see a sharp increase in cars on the road. People will be making up for lost time and pounce all over the opportunity to drive everywhere.

Working from home may motivate people to drive around even more. They’ll feel compelled to leave their house and travel somewhere just to alleviate cabin fever.

What This May Mean For Your Shop

This is great news for shops. More miles means more money. Get ready for an influx of customers. As people start to feel safer to be on the road again, expect to have customers bring their cars in for general check ups and/or maintenance. With customers driving more in 2021, get ready for a busy year!


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