Cars.com School Bus Ridership Continues to Lag as 54% of Parents Choose to Drive Kids to School This Year

Allison.Phelps

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Cars.com revealed new survey data, finding that 54% of parents plan to drive their children to school, rather than send them on a school bus. As COVID concerns continue nationwide, reliance on personal vehicles stays top of mind. Back to School Stats (3).png

“While many parents are eager for the return of in-person learning this fall, nearly 90% are concerned about the delta variant and, as a result, are choosing different modes of transportation for their school-aged children,” said Jenni Newman, editor-in-chief for Cars.com and mom of two boys. “It’s not surprising that parents are prioritizing health and safety, and by driving their kids themselves, parents feel they can better protect their family — even if it means longer drop-off lines or for many, a disruption to their family’s daily routine.”

This is an opportunity for dealers to help families looking to buy a car find the right features to help navigate through this time and keep peace in the family. Here are some features Newman recommends for parents to consider when purchasing their next family vehicle.
For the parents who previously took advantage of the school bus, 55% cite COVID-19 as the main driver in their decision to find alternative transportation, and nearly a quarter of respondents are using their personal vehicles even though it negatively impacts their daily routine.
 

craigh

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So parents are worried about the bus ride the kids take before they all get locked in a room together?

54% of parents will drive their kids.
Of those that used to let their kids take the bus, only 55% of them are citing COVID-19 as the primary reason they're now driving their kids?
And almost 25% of them are going to use their personal vehicle? What are the other 75% using?

There's some interesting things to chew on here..
 
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Allison.Phelps

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Feb 8, 2021
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So parents are worried about the bus ride the kids take before they all get locked in a room together?

54% of parents will drive their kids.
Of those that used to let their kids take the bus, only 55% of them are citing COVID-19 as the primary reason they're now driving their kids?
And almost 25% of them are going to use their personal vehicle? What are the other 75% using?

There's some interesting things to chew on here..

54% will drive, 38% will take the bus, 12% will walk, 9% carpool, 4% bike, 5% are over 16 and will drive themselves, 4% are over 16 and will drive with friends and 2% use ride-share to get to school. I've attached the full deck if you want to take a look at the full results. It is very interesting.
 

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Allison.Phelps

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I plan on letting the kids use my mother-in-law's broom to get to school...

I'll 2nd what @craigh mentioned above, the numbers paint a strange story - 55% say COVID is the primary concern as to why they're driving their kids, what's the other 45%'s issue?

Hey Colin - We didn't have broom on the suvery :) But I can share it with you so you can see what other modes of transport. I'm always surprised at those parents that use ride-sharing services. :)
 

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Alex Snyder

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Thanks for adding the deck @Allison.Phelps

We drive the kids to school in the morning because our logistics and sanity are paramount to parenting. Three kids at three different schools with three different busses. For the same reason those little tyrants (I love so much) can walk their butts down the driveway from the bus in the afternoon. My wife might wait at the top of the driveway 3 different times on the same day if there is ample snow and I haven't plowed our 1/4 mile driveway yet… maybe.

Nothing, other than logistics, factor into how we approach school transportation.
 
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