It’s a reality: less and less young people want to own a car… They prefer to share it. Car sharing, carpooling, emerging motility solutions: the number of alternatives to the personal car continue to grow, and so does their success.
 
The habits of young people in terms of mobility is definitely changing. There was a time where every 18-year old’s biggest wish was to own a car. Today, cities are becoming the cars’ number one enemy. Parking is ever more limited and they must make place for other, often greener, alternatives.

Several studies show that it is not a myth: everywhere in Europe the number of car per family tends to decrease, the number of young adults (18-22) having a driving license too. But why?

The car, no longer the only option in our minds

If the new generation is less and less willing to go for the combo personal car + driving license, it is partly because our car-centered way of thinking has evolved. Bike, carpooling, public transport and certainly the mix of those has taken more and more impact on our habits. Mobility is rapidly evolving from ‘car is king’ to a range of transportation options. This change is supported by city authorities as well as companies.

The kingdom of sharing economy

No one can deny that sharing economy is booming extremely quickly. For each and every aspect of our daily life we can now find a mobile app allowing us to get a cheaper, easier and/or more comfortable way to buy or experience it. Young people who want to travel don’t look for a hotel anymore, they look for an Airbnb. They don’t book a train ticket, they book a Blablacar. They don’t call a taxi at night, they book a Uber to go back home. And they don’t buy a car anymore, they use a car sharing alternative. Drive Now, Zipcar, Cambio, Drivy, CarAmigo, etc.: more and more companies are now launching their car sharing service in Brussels, offering people to share the same vehicles. Since sharing a car also means splitting the costs, some of those companies even propose individuals to share their own car with others.

Technology makes it simple

“Sharing a car with other people? It must be very complicated and restrictive!”. In fact, thanks to genius innovation, sharing a car or ride is way easier than finding a parking spot nowadays. Through the mobile app of the car sharing company, you can easily see where the available cars are around you and book one of them. You don’t even need to worry about the key: you open the car with the app. Mobility has now met what young people prefer: their smartphone.

Less for cars, more for smartphones

If the youth has less interest in cars, there is definitely something for which they excel: the use of new technologies. And in terms of social live, these two are linked. When people from generation X needed a car to nourish their social lives, people from generation Y and Z prefer to take public transport and have time to chat with their fellows while travelling via their smartphone.