Are You the Passenger From Hell?

A new online survey has revealed what British motorists hate most about their passengers. 

10,000 British motorists were asked which passenger habits annoy them most, with messy friends,
backseat drivers and distracting passengers topping the country’s hit list. A huge 40% cited leaving a mess in the car as their ultimate pet hate – while over a third of British motorists expressed their disdain for unsolicited driving advice and in-car distractions.

After the Telegraph revealed that spouses are the most annoying passengers in the UK, this new survey sheds light on the bad habits that drive Brits wild on the road – with results ranging from issues of etiquette to bona fide road hazards.

In-Car Etiquette

Polite passengers are in short supply according to the study, conducted by The Car Loan Warehouse– as drivers revealed the faux pas they can’ t forgive.

With 40% of the vote, leaving a mess in the car emerged as the most annoying habit of all – while
slamming doors, putting feet on seats and eating or drinking inside the vehicle scooped over 20% apiece.

When it comes to making a mess in the car, some Brits have stronger feelings than others – with 43% of women surveyed, and a staggering 68% of women in the South West, citing this as their ultimate annoyance.

Not offering to chip in for petrol also proved controversial – as over a quarter of 18-24 year-olds considered this the ultimate insult, versus just 5% of residents in the North East of England.

Unsurprisingly, breaking wind in the car is not a popular passenger habit – with over 20% of people
surveyed, and a quarter of respondents from the North East, sharing their feelings about this in-car faux pas.

The driver’s seat With 37% of participants taking aim at backseat drivers, and a further 27% waging war on bad directions, it looks like Brits are keen to stay in control when it comes to their driving duties. A third of Londoners wish their passengers would mind their own business – with 33% annoyed by bad driving advice, and 35% sick of dodgy directions.

The car radio and air con are off limits, according to 22% and 12% of Brits respectively
– and with 16% of the vote, ‘ are we there yet?’ is the last sound drivers want to hear on the road.

Road Safety Matters

As charities across the UK continue to bring road safety issues to the forefront, it looks like Britain’ s drivers are staying safety conscious – and distracting passengers are the ones feeling their wrath.

34% of all respondents said passengers who distract them while they’ re driving are the greatest nuisance – along with almost half of over-65s.

Some Brits cited talking too much and even whistling as the things they found most annoying about their passengers – suggesting that in-car noise may be one of the unspoken dangers drivers face.

Other responses included constant criticism from passengers, complaints about their choice of music and, worryingly, leaving nail clippings inside the car.

Jonathan Le Roux, Co-Founder and Director at The Car Loan Warehouse, said:

No one likes a litter-bug and it seems like the British public hate dirty cars too. Moral of the survey is: get in, close the door carefully, don’t fiddle with the buttons and, most importantly of all, NEVER leave your rubbish.

Topline Results:

Drivers: what annoys you most about your passengers?

Leaving their mess in the car: 39.6%

  • Being a backseat driver: 36.7%
  • Distracting you while you’ re driving: 34.1%
  • Giving bad directions: 26.7%
  • Slamming doors: 23.8%
  • Putting their feet on the seats: 23.7%
  • Changing the radio station: 21.7%
  • Breaking wind in the car: 20.4%
  • Eating/drinking in the car: 18.1%
  • ‘ Are we there yet?’ : 16.0%
  • Not chipping in for petrol: 12.7%
  • Adjusting the air con: 12.2%
  • Other: 5.6%

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