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40% of UK drivers planning a Whitsun getaway – whatever the weather

22 May 2014 at 13:59

More than 12.2m* motorists – two in five – say they will be taking to the road to enjoy the late spring bank holiday whatever the weather according to new figures from the RAC, Britain’s longest-running motoring organisation.

Saturday is predicted to be the busiest day of the long weekend, with some 3.5m motorists** – 12% of the UK driving population – expected to be on the move. Although traffic volumes on Monday are not expected to be quite as high, with the school half term starting for many, the RAC is still recommending motorists allow plenty of time for their journeys.

And, it appears there is an appetite for starting the bank holiday weekend early, with Friday set to see around 2.9m drivers on the UK’s highways, according to the RAC survey of more than 1,100 motorists.

The prediction comes as the Highways Agency announces that it will be lifting three-quarters of its roadworks to ease congestion and help keep motorists moving.

RAC roadside operations manager Matt Dallaway says: “The recent settled spell of weather for many parts of the UK might be coming to an end over the next few days, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to spoil the enjoyment of the bank holiday with large numbers of people expected to be out and about and making the most of the extra time off.

“This weekend traditionally marks the start of the British summer holiday season; to make sure it’s not marred by an inconvenient breakdown at the side of the road, drivers should spend some time ensuring their motor is in tip top condition. It takes less than ten minutes to check oil, coolant and windscreen wash levels and tyre pressure, so we recommend getting into a good habit before starting a long journey.

“It’s also great to see that the Highways Agency is pre-empting the busy conditions by lifting roadworks on hundreds of miles of the national road network.”

To help plan your journey and keep up to date with traffic conditions, incidents and roadworks, download the RAC App for iPhone or Android, or visit the RAC Route Planner. Alternatively, you can use the RAC traffic line by calling 64644 from a mobile phone or 09003 444999 from a landline.


* Research conducted on ragdoll w/c 19/05/13 with 1,146 respondents. Those planning a getaway using a car to travel more than 30 miles between Friday 23 May and Monday 26 May

** 42% of the nation’s 29.1m car owners who plan to drive more than 30 miles from Friday 23 May to Monday 26 May – 10% - Friday; 12% - Saturday; 11% - Sunday; 9% - Monday.

Notes to Editors

About RAC

With around seven million members, the RAC is one of the UK's most progressive motoring organisations, providing services for both private and business motorists. Whether it's roadside assistance, insurance, buying a used car, vehicle inspections and checks, legal services or up-to-the-minute traffic and travel information – the RAC offers a solution for all motoring needs. The RAC is committed to making motoring easier, safer, more affordable and more enjoyable for drivers and road users.

The RAC is the motorist’s champion and campaigns to support the interests of its members and UK motorists at a national level, including advancing levels of road safety, supporting the needs of young drivers and voicing concerns about the increasing cost of motoring. The RAC’s annual Report on Motoring survey, now in its 25th year, provides a clear insight into the concerns and issues facing today’s motorists.

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