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Labor Day Traffic Jams: Lost Male Drivers Waste $3,000 in Gas

Sep 3, 2010 – 6:49 AM
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(Sept. 3) -- Men waste more than $3,000 in fuel costs because they refuse to ask for directions when lost, according to a British study released as motorists across the U.S. prepare to load up their cars for the long Labor Day weekend.

The research, commissioned by British insurance company Sheila's Wheels, revealed that male drivers travel 276 unnecessary miles each year because they stubbornly reject help when lost.

In what might not be shocking news for female passengers, the survey found that more than a quarter of men polled said they would wait at least half an hour before asking for directions when lost.

One in 10 male drivers refuses to ask a stranger for help at all, the survey found.
Men waste more than $3,000 in fuel costs each year because they refuse to ask for directions when lost.
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Men waste more than $3,000 in fuel costs because they refuse to ask for directions when lost, according to a British study.
The survey suggested that "lost drive time could cost as much as 2,000 pounds [just over $3,000 at current exchange rates]" in gas in a driver's lifetime.

The survey results also found that three-quarters of women polled had no problem with asking for directions.

"Men aren't quite as confident behind the wheel as they make out when it comes to navigation," said Jacky Brown, a Sheila's Wheels representative.

In the U.S., the American Automobile Association has predicted 34.4 million vacationing travelers will take to the road this long weekend -- almost 10 percent more than for the same holiday in 2009.

On Labor Day weekend in the U.S., 91 percent of travelers, or 31.4 million people, will reach their destination by car, according to AAA.

AAA predicts gas prices will average $2.65 to $2.75 a gallon over the weekend, "barring any major tropical storm activity in the Gulf Coast region."

Average driving distance on the 2010 Labor Day weekend, based on AAA's survey of traveler intentions, is expected to be 635 miles.

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The auto association said median spending over the weekend was forecast at $697 -- nearly $50 more than last year, indicating a slight improvement in the economy.

While that's good news for a rebounding national travel industry, AAA predicted Gulf Coast tourism would be affected by some travelers avoiding the region because of the recent BP oil spill.

The most popular reason for traveling over the Labor Day weekend? To "visit with friends/relatives," according to AAA.

There were no figures for drivers expecting to get lost.
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