We all remember the thrill of our first, ever car – the elation of being free of the parent taxi service or dreaded local bus. Having a car as a young adult was a status symbol – a message to our peers that we had finally arrived in the world.
According to DVLA records, however, car ownership is now on the decline, with far less 17-20 year olds holding driving licenses, compared to 25 years ago. In fact, compared to 1990, there’s been a 12.5% reduction in young adults holding a license. This is shown most prominently in men – with only 33% in 2015 having a driving license, compared to 54% in 1990.
Car leasing company, Cars on Demand, carried out a survey to find out how today’s youth feel about driving and car ownership.
It seems this Millennial generation have wildly differing views on what’s important to them in terms of status compared to those of us growing up in the early 1990s. To find out more about this mysterious segment of society, Cars on Demand ran a survey of 2,000 18-25 year olds, to understand their thoughts on car ownership and what ultimately, is most important to them in terms of status symbols.
According to the survey results, 29% of Millennials ranked owning their own home as most important to them in terms of the ultimate status symbol. It’s what our millennial respondents ranked second highest, however, in terms of the ultimate status symbol that got us feeling, well old. The second most popular answer amongst our survey participants was a large following on social media. That’s right - for 24% of respondents, ‘making it’ on social media was their ultimate status symbol. Forget the designer clothes, latest phones, laptops and car, for them, having thousands of followers on their Instagram page was their ultimate mark of status.
Paul Brown, managing director at Cars on Demand, said: ‘There’s really little reason for Millennials to own cars nowadays and nor does it seem they’re interested in doing so. That’s why short-term leasing can be an attractive option to this non-committal generation.’