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New survey shows Canadians’ driving habits might not be as good as they think

belairdirect uncovers Canadians’ willingness to change driving habits for the right incentive

TORONTO, ON, August 14, 2017 While most Canadians think they are good drivers, their habits behind the wheel might indicate otherwise. A new belairdirect survey by Leger Research shows the majority of Canadians (95%) think they are good drivers, but surprisingly 93% have admitted to engaging in at least one bad habit behind the wheel.

Many Canadians have engaged in risky or distracting behaviour while driving, including eating and drinking, using a cellphone, applying make-up and even being romantic or intimate. But, the good news is that they are willing to change – for the right incentive.

Canadians identified what they believe to be the top three riskiest behaviours of drivers on the road, including:

  • Being under the influence (89%)
  • Distracted driving (54%)
  • Fatigue (42%)

The majority of drivers (79%) would be willing to give up at least one bad driving habit if they knew a monetary incentive was offered. Habits drivers are most willing to give up involve limiting their cellphone use, including:

  • Sending a text
  • Checking their phone
  • Making a call/or talking on the phone

Some activities that drivers were less enthusiastic to give up included changing the radio station or volume, turning to talk to another passenger, or sipping a beverage while driving. The study also found that nearly one out of 10 (9%) drivers were not willing to give up anything even if a monetary incentive was involved.

Upholding our Canadian reputation as being nice and good natured, it’s not surprising that 54% of us like to sing while driving and 96% of us would not steal another driver’s parking spot, or speed up to stop someone from passing us (91%).

Other survey findings:

  • 93% of those aged 18-34 are the group most willing to improve their driving habits if they knew they would be rewarded.
  • Drivers aged 18-44 are significantly more likely to admit to having used their cellphone, updated a map or GPS, removed an article of clothing such as a jacket or applied make-up while driving.
  • Three in 10 drivers admit to have driven through a red light (31%) and disobeyed road signs (29%).
  • The provinces most willing to change driving habits, if they knew they would be rewarded are British Columbia and Alberta, both 96% followed closely by Saskatchewan and Manitoba (92%). The rest of the provinces were also overwhelmingly willing (80% plus) to change their driving habits which is a testament to our openness to change.
  • 14% of drivers have engaged in romantic activities while driving.
  • Lastly, 3% of drivers have flossed while driving.

belairdirect ‘Good Driver’ campaign

In conjunction with the release of the survey results, belairdirect is celebrating good drivers with its latest national advertising campaign (August 14 to October 22). The brand’s trusted knight with a crowd of supporters including cheerleaders, call out good drivers on the road – letting them know they could be eligible to save up to 25% on their car insurance premiums. Campaign credits: belairdirect, Sid Lee, Mile Inn, Married to Giants, Red Lab and Wingman, Audio Z, PHD Montreal.

About the Survey

On behalf of belairdirect, Leger Research conducted a web survey from July 24 to July 27, 2017, among a representative sample of 1,551 French or English-speaking Canadians, 18 years of age or older. Using data from Statistics Canada, results were weighted according to gender, age, region, mother tongue, education and presence of minor children in the household in order to ensure a representative sample of the entire population under review.

About belairdirect

Founded in Quebec in 1955, belairdirect provides car and home insurance products directly to consumers. It currently employs more than 1,600 people. The company offers a simple but complete solution, allowing customers to communicate with an agent by phone, online or in person through its network of branches. belairdirect was the first property and casualty insurer in North America to sell car insurance products online (, attesting to the company's innovative character. belairdirect is a subsidiary of Intact Financial Corporation, the largest provider of property and casualty insurance in Canada (TSX : IFC - For more information, please visit or follow belairdirect on Facebook page, Instagram page and Twitter.

For further information:
Jennifer Beck
External Communications
416-250-7720 ext. 47717

1 844 495.7607 Mondays to Fridays from 8:30a.m to 5p.m
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