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Road trip statistics Australia

8.2 million Australians are planning a domestic road trip over the next 6 months.

Wide open roads, good tunes and snacks galore – Aussies love a road trip. From coastal highways to narrow rainforest passages, this country has much to offer those who travel by land.

Finder surveyed 1,086 Australians to find out where and how Aussies will be hitting the road in 2022.

How many Australians are planning a road trip?

2 in 5 Australians (42%) – equivalent to 8.2 million people – are planning a domestic road trip in the next 6 months, according to a nationally representative survey of 1,086 respondents.

This is down from 51% in July 2020 amid the peak of the pandemic.

A further 2% are planning to venture out of Australia to take a road trip overseas.

Gen Z (50%) are the most likely to be planning a domestic road trip, followed by millennials and gen X (both 41%).

Between the states, those from New South Wales (48%) and Queensland (44%) will be hitting the Aussie roads the most in the next 6 months. Victorians (4%) are the most likely to be planning an overseas road adventure.

The survey found the 3 most popular states Aussies are planning to drive through are New South Wales (40%), Queensland (37%) and Victoria (32%).

Queensland is the top destination for gen Z road trippers (39%), whereas older generations are more likely to favour New South Wales. Baby boomers (21%) are the most likely generation to venture to South Australia.

Not surprisingly, most Aussies tend to stick to their own backyard, with the majority of road trippers travelling within their own state. Outside of their own state, those from New South Wales are most likely to travel to Queensland, and vice versa.

South Australians' favourite interstate destination is the Northern Territory.

Meanwhile Western Australians are the most likely to stick to their own state. Only 7% of road trippers from Western Australia say they'll venture interstate.

What mode of transport do road trippers take?

Australia is a large country with long stretches of open outback road. It's no wonder then, that the majority of Aussie road trippers (86%) plan to take their own car or caravan.

Only around 1 in 10 (12%) plan to rent a car, while 4% will be renting a caravan.

Older generations tend to stick more to taking their own car (88%), whereas gen Z are more likely to rent a car (18%). Millennials are the most likely to try out public transport options (13%).

Damage or theft to a rental car could cost thousands of dollars, so it's worth taking out car rental excess insurance. A standalone policy costs as little as $3 per day, which is typically cheaper than what a car hire company would charge you.

How common is roadside assistance?

Close to 1 in 3 (31%) Australian adults have experienced a car breakdown in the 2 years to February 2021, according to research from Finder.

Just over half (53%) of those who have had a roadside incident were covered by roadside assistance, while a further 26% say they signed up on the spot.

Assuming an average callout fee of $100, that's $78 million that Aussie drivers are spending per year on callout fees alone.

The survey found 1 in 10 (9%) didn't need to call roadside assistance, while another 9% called a partner, family member or friend instead. A further 4% didn't call roadside assistance because they weren't covered.

Road trip tips from an expert

Finder insurance expert Taylor Blackburn said roadside assistance is offered with most car insurance policies from as little as $6 per month.

"Paying this little extra could save you from a hefty bill in the event of a breakdown."

"Some insurers include roadside assistance for free, while for others it's an add-on, so check your policy."

"Roadside assistance will typically give you nationwide coverage, but there may be a surcharge if you're stranded in a really remote area or if you need to replace your car's battery."

"Some policies have limits on how far your vehicle will be towed, so check this if you're planning to drive through the outback."

"Be sure to look out for exclusions and extras in your policy. You might not be covered for damage caused by an accident and you could be charged extra if your car breaks down due to a pre-existing condition."


Written by

Sophie Wallis

Sophie Wallis is a senior insights analyst with a passion for data storytelling. She spends her time turning complex data into digestible stories and uncovering new consumer trends. When she isn't working, you'll find her planning her next overseas holiday or bingeing on a big novel. Sophie has a Bachelor of Economics from the University of Melbourne. See full profile

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