6.3 million dogs and 2.3 million cats expected to be taken on summer staycations
Cats expected to travel 349 million miles
A third of 18-34 year old cat owners plan to take their feline friend on 'va-cat-ion'
A fifth of dog owners say their holidaying habits have changed since they got a dog
Millions of pet owners are packing up their cars with dogs and cats as well as family, friends and luggage this summer, reveals new research1 from Direct Line Motor Insurance. Nearly 12 million owners plan to take their dogs on road trips, each travelling an average of 123 miles. This means the nation's dogs will be driven a combined 1.4 billion miles across the UK this summer.
Dogs are not the only ones going on holiday this year, as many cat owners also say they can't bear to leave their feline friends behind. Some 3.6 million owners plan to take their cats on road trips over the next few months, driving 98 miles each, meaning British cats too will travel a total of 349 million miles.
'Va-cat-ions' are being fuelled by younger owners: a third (33 per cent) of cat owners aged 18-34 plan to take them on holiday, compared to just four per cent of owners over the age of 55.
Further research2 from Direct Line suggests the rise of staycationing is driving this trend, with 6.3 million dogs and 2.3 million cats expected to be taken on UK holidays this summer. The research found that British breaks are booming, with 36.9 million trips taken last year, with over 13 million Brits (25 per cent) not currently finding overseas holidays an appealing prospect due to the pandemic.
Lorraine Price, Head of Motor Insurance at Direct Line said: 'This summer is set to see another boom for staycations as we pack up our cars and hit the road for well deserved holidays. We are certainly a nation of animal lovers, which is clear from the number of dog and cat owners who plan to pack their pets in the car when they set off this summer. Driving with pets can be stressful, so it's worth spending time planning how they're going to be safely secured and that there are plenty of opportunities for stops along the way if going on a long journey.'
Nearly 20 million people (37 per cent) say their holiday habits have changed this year, with pet ownership a key factor. A quarter (25 per cent) would feel uncomfortable leaving their dog with someone else while they went on holiday, while a fifth (20 per cent) say their holidaying habits have changed since they got a dog. One in five (19 per cent) wouldn't normally drive on a UK holiday, while one in seven (15 per cent) wouldn't normally take their pet on a UK holiday but will this year.
Table one: How holiday habits have changed this year
Source: Direct Line Motor Insurance 2021
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Notes to Editors
1 Research commissioned with Opinium between 18th - 22nd June among a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults
2 Research commissioned with Opinium between 30th March and 1st April 2021 among a nationally representative sample of 2,002 UK adults
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Started in 1985, Direct Line became the first UK insurance company to use the telephone as its main channel of communication. It provides motor, home, travel, and pet insurance cover direct to customers by phone or on-line.
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