Well I don’t know about you but I wasn’t surprised by an article that I read in Parent Dish about parents driving the equivalent of a trip to Mars each week ferrying children about !
Have you ever thought just how many miles you drive your children around each week?
Most parents have moments of feeling like a glorified taxi service when doing the football club run, party pick ups or waiting in the car for your kids to come out from swimming lessons. Well aside from the school run, research from Sainsbury’s Finance shows we drive the equivalent of a trip to Mars each week. That’s a staggering 230 million miles taking our children to all those social, sporting and recreational events.
Dad comes out as head taxi driver clocking up an average 28 miles a week with a wait time of one hour 23 minutes compared with ‘Mum Cabs’ which drive 21 miles a week and clock up waiting time of one hour and four minutes. And one in twenty of us put in over one hundred miles a week ferrying our children around.
Tot up the equivalent in cab fares plus waiting time and the average parent is worth £66 a week to their children. Parents in the North East and Wales are slowest to grab their car keys followed by Scotland and the East Midlands with parents in the South East jumping behind the wheel most frequently.
Right now with sky high petrol prices and lengthy pump queues providing a family taxi service could seem even more like a chore, but two thirds of parents claim travel time together is beneficial to their relationships as it’s the only time they can chat to their kids without the distractions of TV.
For many parents safety is a big consideration too, which means we’re more prepared to jump in the car than point our kids in the direction of the nearest bus stop. But while you can’t put a price on time spent with your children, if next time they ask for a lift and you feel they’re being just a little bit too lazy……. you could show them this online taxi calculator where you can work out the value of your own family ‘taxi service’ by popping in your details.
Have you ever worked out how many miles you do in an average week fetching and carrying kids?
Do you actually enjoy the time together when transporting them?
I know I used to use the time I drove my son to football training every Thursday as a way to keep chatting and connected with his life as he changed into a teenager.
At first I slightly resented the half an hour journey but then I shifted my perspective and I found I relaxed, enjoyed the regular Thursday trips and miss them now !
Sometimes we just listened to the radio, sometimes we chatted about the usual stuff, other times we talked deep and meaningful and other times I passed on my values and thoughts about life to him – other times we just chatted about football !
How do you use your ferrying time ?
What would it take to make a small shift in attitude and perspective ?