High price of getting around

Britons spend 15 per cent of their household outgoings on transport - twice the amount they did 44 years ago, according to a report published today. Although people own more cars, the amount of time they spend travelling has also increased, the report from environmental group Transport 2000 found.

The average household now spends pounds 36.17 per week on motoring and pounds 6.64 on fares and other travel costs, said the report, Vital Travel Statistics. This transport spending accounts for 15 per cent of household weekly spending, compared with just 7 per cent in 1953.

The report also found that the amount of time a person spends travelling each week rose from five hours and 47 minutes in 1975 to six hours and 53 minutes in 1994. Shopping trips are said to account for 22 per cent of all journeys.

In the year 1975-76, the proportion of work trips by car was 39 per cent in London and 54 per cent in small urban areas. By the mid-1990s this had increased to 49 per cent for Londoners and 73 for for those in small urban areas.