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Canadians Almost Never Drive Their Vehicle

If you’re Canadian, chances are strong (83 percent, in fact) that you own or lease a vehicle. But chances are very strong that you almost never use it. A recent survey conducted by Canadian polling firm Léger for ride-sharing service Turo shows that privately-owned vehicles in Canada sit idle 95 percent of the time on average.

If you’re curious what that works out to, that’s 400.6 hours that the average Canadian vehicle owner spends driving their car, SUV or truck around every year. Which sounds like a lot, but it only accounts for 5 percent of the year. The other 95 percent? That vehicle is, quite literally, dead weight.

Conducted last November, Léger’s survey polled over 1,500 Canadians aged 18 or over. And what it found is not a revelation, exactly. In fact, advocates of public transportation, ride-sharing services and car-sharing services like Turo have been making the point for years that vehicle owners, not just in Canada but around the globe, put a lot of money into an object that spends virtually all of its time idle and unused.

The recent trend towards working from home has only increased that idleness, of course, although as the pandemic slowly peters out (we hope), Canadian may gradually take more to the roads again. Though even that won’t move the percentage of vehicle use much. Studies conducted years ago found that in most contexts, private passenger-vehicle use never climbed above 10 percent of the time.

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