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78% of Canadians couldn't live without their car despite high costs: poll

Last Updated Apr 4, 2019 at 7:40 am PST

(iStock Photo)

METRO VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Despite gas prices being close to reaching a record-high in Metro Vancouver, a new poll has found most Canadians still think it would be impossible for them not to own a car.

According to an Angus Reid poll, 78 per cent of Canadians say they couldn’t live without a car even though 45 per cent of them think the cost of owning one is too high. This is particularly true for British Columbians where residents were more likely than the rest of the country to agree that owning a car is too expensive.

But despite the high number of people saying they couldn’t live their car, Canadians use them about four per cent of the time, meaning their cars sit idle about 96 per cent of the time.

The poll found that an “overwhelming majority” of Canadians try to offset the costs by washing their own car, doing their own car repairs, carpooling, and hunting for gas deals.

Canadians are said to spend thousands of dollars every year on car payments — an average of more than $5,000 for those who lease or finance — as well as $1,500 for insurance and about $800 for maintenance.

But despite the high costs of ownership, 84 per cent of Canadians own a car, with 37 per cent owning more than one.

The online survey was conducted between Feb. 12-15 with 2,017 Canadians participating. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 2,2 per cent.