Are We Happier Behind The Wheel?
Release date: 22 March 2016
Survey by DirectAsia Insurance reveals that Singaporeans have some of their most memorable life moments in their cars.
It’s long been said that Singaporeans have a love affair with their cars but a new survey by leading specialty motor insurer DirectAsia Singapore, has revealed that this goes far beyond convenience, with many revealing the unique relationship they have with their vehicle and the part it plays in their everyday lives.
Our cars help us get lucky in love
It seems that our cars have been the setting for romance for many drivers. Nearly half of participants have fond memories of taking a date out in their car (46%); one in five shared a first kiss with a partner in their car (22%), and almost one fifth have chauffeured a loved one on their wedding day (17%). It seems things can also get a little hot under the collar too, with Gen-X (36-45 year olds) most likely to enjoy ‘making out’ in their cars (19%).
We have our fondest memories from time in our car
Our vehicles play a part in some of the big, life-changing moments for some drivers with one in three recalling the drive back home with their newborn baby, or taking their grandchild out in the car for the first time, as one of their happiest memories (33%).
We spend more time in our cars than hanging out with friends and shopping
It may be a small island, but the majority of drivers spend more than five hours each week in their vehicles (77%) – more than the amount of time spent on well-loved Singaporean pastimes such as shopping (51%), cooking (49%), seeing friends (64%) or watching TV (74%). Also, 40% of Singaporeans love to go for a drive even when they don’t have a destination in mind.
Being on the road is a time to bond
Nearly half of 46-58 year olds see car journeys as a chance to bond with passengers (48%). In fact, taking a road trip with friends or family would be the number one holiday choice for 44% of Singaporean drivers surveyed.
Our cars are very precious to us
Despite the high cost of vehicles, COE prices, and Singapore’s world-class public transport system, drivers won’t give up their cars. In fact 68% say it’s their preferred mode of transport, over public transport, walking or cycling - with one in four even saying they couldn’t live without their car (28%). It’s no surprise that the two biggest worries for drivers are getting into a car accident (73%) or having their car stolen (53%).
Singaporeans love karaoke in the car
The majority of drivers agree that nothing beats listening to their favourite tunes in the car (65%). Millennials are most likely to test their vocal chords, with 67% saying they like to sing out loud compared to just 23% over-55s. More than half even invest in new speakers and sound systems (58%), the most popular car upgrade.
Driving is a stress buster
Despite the long hours spent in our cars, some drivers relish this time with a quarter of respondents believing that driving helps them to release stress (24%). Traffic and road rage don’t put off the younger generation, with as many as 41% saying that being in the car is actually calming.
Put down that mobile phone for safety
Men will have to get used to the new law which prevents holding any mobile device while driving, with nearly three times as many males (11%) as females (4%) admitting to checking their phones in the car.
Help with the small print
Despite a car being like an extension of the family to some drivers, when it comes to buying car insurance, some still take a more relaxed approach to reading the Terms and Conditions on their policies. Those over the age of 45yrs are the guiltiest of purchasing a package without fully understanding the small print (33%), whilst under-25s are most likely to read the small print religiously (41%).
“Our research shows that our cars are very important to us, and we want to motivate people to get in the driving seat when it comes to buying car insurance too. We recognise that insurance regulations and the small print on a policy can be rather confusing to drivers, which is why at DirectAsia, we strive to be clear and transparent when customers come to us direct, whether on the phone, in person or online. We have locally based customer care specialists who are trained in guiding customers through the entire process, coverage and claims,” said Pauline Png, Chief Marketing Officer of DirectAsia.
“We strive to be the place ‘where happier matters’, promising to make the insurance journey as hassle-free as possible. People who have experienced our service give us great feedback on how we have helped them understand their choices better. All of this, we believe, will provide a happier and more positive insurance experience for everyone in Singapore," Png added.
For more information or assistance on securing a direct quote, visit DirectAsia’s retail counter at 88 South Bridge Road, visit the website at www.directasia.com, or call 6665 5555 to speak with a customer service specialist.
Research was commissioned by DirectAsia Insurance Singapore and carried out by 2CV with a sample of 500 motorists in Singapore aged between 18-55+.
About DirectAsia Insurance
DirectAsia’s primary business is in motor insurance and travel. Direct Asia is present in Singapore, Thailand and Hong Kong, has more than 100,000 customers, and employs more than 200 people across the three markets. DirectAsia has a strong direct to consumer business model, operating in markets where there is growing acceptance of digital ecommerce channels and it uses market leading rating mechanisms. Launched in 2010 in Singapore, DirectAsia.com became a part of global insurer Hiscox, one of the world's leading international specialist insurance groups listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE:HSX). Hiscox brings decades of insurance knowledge and experience to Southeast Asia.
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Additional survey results – research commissioned by DirectAsia and carried out by 2CV with a sample of 500 motorists in Singapore.
Singaporean drivers are reliant on their cars
- Whilst most of us use our cars to get us from A to B (67%); 2 out of 5 Singaporean drivers claim they just love to drive, even when they don’t have a destination in mind (40%), and 28% can’t live without their cars
- The longer you spend in your car the more you rely on it:
- Not surprisingly those who say they just love to drive spend the most time in their cars (47% of people who spend more than 11 hours a week in the cars say they just love to drive compared to only 22% of drivers who spend less than five hours driving a week)
- Drivers are not put off by traffic - 68% say they still prefer to travel by car than take public transport, and only 2% are green enough to consider cycling
- Interestingly, drivers would prefer to travel by MRT (15%) or bus (6%) than by taxi (4%) or cycling (2%)
- It may be a small island, but 77% of drivers say they spend more than 5 hours in their car or as a passenger every week – that’s nearly a full working day
- We spend more time in our cars on a weekly basis than we do cooking, seeing friends, shopping or watching TV
The relationship between driving and stress
- Despite the hectic roads in Singapore, 1 in 4 drivers say driving helps them to release stress (24%); this is especially true for 18-25 year olds (41%)
- On the other hand, over 55s are twice as likely to find driving stressful as their younger counterparts (23% compared to only 10% of 18-25 YOs)
The importance of motor insurance
- Getting into an accident (73%) or having your car stolen (53%) would be the biggest worry for drivers, ranking significantly higher than losing a credit card (32%)
- These were particular concerns for 18-25 year olds with 87% worried about getting into an accident and 62% worried about their car being stolen
Everyone needs a helping hand to better understand the small print in their policy
- 47% are unaware of how easy it is to get a quote direct from their insurer to help them understand all the important terms and conditions on an insurance policy
- Millennials are reportedly the most diligent, and the most likely to read their policies religiously (41%)
- On the other hand, people over the age of 44 take a more relaxed approach with one in three saying they rarely understand the small print, but proceed in the hope that they won’t need to claim
Are we sociable drivers or do we want some alone time?
- Our cars social spaces at special occasions – we’re most likely to have a full car of passengers when making family visits for festivities like Chinese New Year (67%), or on holiday (56%)
- A road trip with family / friends would be the most popular choice for a holiday (44%)
- However less than one in five Singaporeans is likely to carpool on the way to work (17%)
- The younger generation are not keen on family bonding in their car – with only 26% of 18-25 year olds saying this is something they enjoy about driving, compared to 48% of 46-54 year olds
Ahh…our favourite memories in our cars
- We’re old romantics; some of the happiest memories we’ve had in our cars include taking a date out (46%), sharing a first kiss (22%) and chauffeuring a loved one on their wedding day (17%)
- Things can get a little hot under the collar for Generation X, with one in five 36-45 year olds admitting that ‘making out’ is one of their favourite things to do in their car
- Women are more sentimental about achievements though, with 36% saying one of their happiest memories is passing their driving test in their own car, compared to 52% of men who say one of their happiest memories is taking a date out in their car (52%)
- The over-55s are more family focused, with 48% saying one of their happiest memories is driving their newborn baby / grandchild home in their car in their life
Nothing beats listening to your favourite music in the car
- A new music system / speakers is the most popular upgrade Singaporeans make to their cars, with 58% of drivers adding this to their cars
- Listening to the radio or our own music in our cars is the number one thing that makes us feel happy when in our cars (65%) with 45% of us enjoying singing along
- 18-25 year olds are most likely to sing out loud (67%), compared to only 23% of over 55s
- Pop, classical and rock music are our favourite types of music to cruise along to
- Driving is a chance for us to take a break from our mobiles, however nearly three times as many men admit they enjoy checking their phones while in their car (11% of men compared to 4% of women)