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  • Mums and dads drive an average of 491 miles each year for their child’s sporting exploits
  • Five million (4.9) parents regularly ferry their children around
  • Londoners travel the furthest (949 miles pa), but East Midlanders spend the most (£1,043)

British parents drive their children 2.4 billion miles per year – an average of 491 miles each – in their bid to foster the next generation of sports stars. That’s according to a new survey from Kwik Fit, which found that almost five (4.9) million doting parents regularly drive their kids to football, swimming, athletics and other sporting meet-ups.

A staggering 20,000 parents travel over 12,000 miles a year in the pursuit of their child’s sporting excellence and a further 50,000 mums and dads drive over 500 miles a month.

It isn’t cheap developing a child’s sporting talent with parents in the UK spending an average of £392 a year on memberships, lessons and equipment for their aspiring kids. That’s in addition to car running costs, which could be why a third (36%) of motoring parents have delayed servicing their motor or replacing worn tyres, risking a breakdown, puncture or worse.

Athletes put the miles in

Football is the most common child’s sport that gets parents in the car, with swimming second. While football’s the most popular, parents only drive 72 miles a month for the sport. Athletics, on the other hand, accounts for the furthest average distance travelled by parents at 147 miles per month, and horse riding is second (140 miles). Climbing requires parents to travel the third furthest (125 miles per month on average) whilst swimming (97 miles) and running (83 miles) are fourth and fifth respectively.

Londoners drive the furthest – East Midlanders spend the most

Londoners drive the furthest for their children’s sporting pursuits (949 miles p/a), with those in the North East driving the second furthest (783 miles). East Midlanders are third in the distance travelled charts. However, that region’s parents spend a whopping £1,043, on top of car running costs, to support their kids’ participation in sport – the highest average across the country and more than five times the amount spent in Scotland (£188).


Average number of miles travelled per year in pursuit of a child’s sporting future

Yearly spend (not inc. car running costs)

949 miles £369
North East

783 miles £306

East Midlands

640 miles £1,043
Yorkshire and Humber

499 miles £252
East Anglia

462 miles £440
West Midlands

454 miles £414

420 miles £188
South East

414 miles £422

314 miles £307
South West

265 miles £241
North West

176 miles £374
Roger Griggs, communications director at Kwik Fit, said:  “We are a great nation for sport and it’s clear that British parents are making huge sacrifices both in terms of time and money so that the next generation of sporting stars can break through. For those parents who are eating up the miles to support their kids, it’s all the more important that they keep on top of maintenance so their car is reliable, but more importantly, safe.”

Kwik Fit advises parents who are regularly on the road supporting their children’s sporting activities to ensure their cars are kept in peak condition with the company providing fixed price servicing to keep costs under control.

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