Take the train – it’s better for your blood pressure!

4th Jan 2010
Take the train – it’s better for your blood pressure!

With Christmas holidays rapidly approaching many of us dread the inevitable arguments associated with travelling. Today Virgin Trains, the leading West Coast rail provider,  reveals that cars are officially the most stressful mode of transport, with traffic jams, difficulties entertaining the children and the lack of space all making the journey much more testing.

Only 11% of UK parents (with children under 18) find trains the mode of transport most likely to cause an argument – meaning 88% just sit back and relax and enjoy the simplicity. Delays, the booking process and the uncomfortable seats all make planes and coaches some of the most unpopular modes of transport for families. Courtesy of the onboard entertainment from children’s colouring books to interactive games all the family can play, the train was the mode of transport parents don’t have to worry about keeping the children amused.


Interestingly the nostalgic games such as I spy are still popular on journeys with almost three quarters (73%) of the UK’s parents playing it when they were a child, and almost half (49%) still playing the game with their children. The use of electronic games on journeys has unsurprisingly increased. Only 11% of the UK’s parents played electronic games on journeys when they were children whereas almost a third now plays games such as Nintendo DS’s with their children.



Says Jim Rowe, Senior Communications Manager at Virgin Trains: “Nobody wants to start or finish their holiday with an argument so why should we opt for a mode of transport likely to induce it. With an array of activities to keep children entertained and the frequency of trains combined passengers will be able to sit back and relax and let someone else worry!


Jim continues: “Parents are increasingly staying in the UK for holidays so are looking for ways of travelling that allows all the family to relax. With an 18% increase in ticket sales so far this yet compared with last year trains are clearly becoming a more popular method of transport.”


Additional findings included:

  * Birmingham, Coventry, Glasgow, Northampton, Sheffield and Wolverhampton said the train was the least stressful and therefore least likely to cause arguments
  * The coach is the least popular mode of transport when taking a family trip
  * Card games were most popular with Northampton and Cardiff
  * However Wolverhampton and Edinburgh still favoured board games such as Cluedo and Snakes and Ladders



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