The Tailgater. The Drifter. The Crawler. What do all these people have in common? No, they aren’t the type of person most likely to hit on you at the local dive bar on a Friday night. Instead, they are the type of drivers who incite the most road rage, at least according to the 2014 Expedia Road Rage Report.
We recently teamed up with Northstar to survey 1,001 Americans to identify road trip habits and to analyze the behaviors that most likely elicit road rage. Among the data we divined: 61 percent of survey respondents said they treat their rental car better than their own car (legitimately surprising), and New York City is considered the most road rage-inducing city (duh).
This information is particularly important at this time of year. Next week, more than 30 million people will hit the road for what’s really the start of summer and road trip season, Memorial Day Weekend. If you’re like us, you’ll hit the road after marking off the days on your calendar (and daydreaming about beaches and snow cones and men or women in skimpy bikinis). Still, as our survey revealed, when the amount of drivers hitting the road increases, the amount of courteous driving habits seems to decrease.
Details of the survey are fascinating. “The Texter” is the driver personality that elicits the most rage, with 69 percent of respondents listing it as the most aggravating driving behavior. The top-five list also included Tailgaters (60 percent), Multi-taskers (54 percent), Drifters (43 percent), and Crawlers (39 percent).
The least annoying road trip behavior? That’d be “The Red Light Racer,” at 12 percent (of our respondents). You know this person; he or she is the one who inches ever so close to the stoplight when it is red. Oh, and the hardest-to-believe stat from our survey? That only 17 percent of respondents admitted to flipping-off a fellow motorist, but 69 percent of them have been flipped off by someone else.
All of this information may just add fuel to your fire before you hit the road this summer, so we wanted to leave you with some insight and recommendations as you plan your upcoming road trips.
- Mobile Apps. While our report revealed that mobile phones can bring out the worst in people, it also showed that these devices can bring out the best in people. More than 40 percent of respondents indicated that they use mobile phone maps regularly, making mobile phones integral to the road-trip experience. Among the 76 percent of respondents who own and regularly use an app-enabled mobile device, more than 4 in 10 (42 percent) have downloaded an app specifically to use while in the car, and 23 percent of them using that app to search for accommodations. This is where the Expedia mobile app comes in handy; our app features many mobile-exclusive deals and triple Expedia Rewards for those trips booked through the app.
- Rental Cars. Our findings told us that 96 percent of respondents believe gas prices will rise this summer. At the same time, our data indicates that 56 percent of Americans define a road trip as an “ideal” way to spend a vacation. If you’re one of the bunch who plans to take a road-trip this summer, renting a car could be a great option. Our report found that price is the most critical feature in a rental car, with 62 percent of our respondents ranking it as “most important.” Size is the second most important feature, followed by rental type (convertible, SUV, sedan, or other), style (standard versus premium/luxury), and brand. Expedia has tons of car rental options to fit all wants and needs for the summer road warrior.
- Places To Go. You may be asking yourself where you should road-trip this summer. One of our personal favorites, California’s Pacific Coast Highway, also was the favorite among those we surveyed, with 41 percent of respondents preferring it above every other road trip. The top five list was rounded out with Route 66, Florida’s Overseas Highway, the Hawaii Belt, and the Blue Ridge Parkway.
You can see the full results of the 2014 Expedia Road Rage Report here.