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Kiwi kids most patient on long car journeys

12 May 12

Kiwi kids most patient on long car journeys

In the lead-up to Mother’s Day, TomTom shares the road trip realities of 5,000 mums from around the world.


An independent study reveals that it takes on average just 27 minutes for children to get bored on long car journeys. Of those countries surveyed, children in Australia get bored the quickest at 23 minutes and New Zealand children appear the most patient, with boredom kicking in at 34 minutes.


The study suggests that the average holiday car journey lasts up to five hours. With so much time spent in the car, Kiwi mums are resourceful at keeping their children amused.


81% make up games (compared with 74% of those countries surveyed), 78% offer treats and rewards (compared with 52% of all surveyed), and 22% of Kiwi mums admitted that they lie about the estimated time of arrival to make the journey seem shorter.


“Kiwis have a long tradition of going on the great family holiday road trip, so it’s no surprise that Kiwi mums are the best at keeping their kids entertained during the journey – even if Kiwi children are the most patient in the world, boredom on a long journey is inevitable!” says Valerie Cross, Public Relations Manager for Asia Pacific. “Whilst we can’t stop children getting bored, we can make sure family journeys are the best they can be. From avoiding endless hours spent in traffic jams, to finding the best places to stop en route, TomTom is an ideal travel companion for a family road trip.”


Kiwi mums also value time together with family in the car with 75% of mums said that “being together as a family” is the best part of a family trip (compared with 60% of all surveyed).  But, mums all over the world say driving with kids could be stressful with 41% stating that being in the car with their children is far more stressful than being in the office (NZ mums were lower at 35%). 


In this country driving is also more likely to cause arguments, 42% said they are likely to argue with their partner during the journey compared with 36% for all respondents.


TomTom aims to make family journeys better by reducing the time spend in traffic and by offering driver-friendly content and services to help families make the most of their time together. It is proven that drivers with TomTom HD Traffic, the world’s most accurate and detailed traffic service that updates road conditions every two minutes, reach their destination faster than anyone else on the road. 


New Search & Go LIVE Services – now offered across all TomTom GO devices in New Zealand– allows drivers to pick a hotel with availability and price information from Expedia and find the best places to visit and eat at using trusted reviews from TripAdvisor. Once they're on their way, they can keep friends and family up to date on their destination and arrival time on Twitter.




Average time for children aged 2-8 years old to get bored on a long car journey:

New Zealand  34 minutes

Australia        23 minutes

UK                24 minutes

Spain            25 minutes

Italy             26 minutes

Netherlands   27 minutes

US                30 minutes

France          30 minutes

Germany       31 minutes


The average time taken for children to get bored was calculated based on feedback from  3295 mums with children aged 2 to 8 years old and based on journeys over 30 minutes in length, where children had no form of amusement such as a DVD player in the car. This sample was chosen out of the total interviewed women.


The survey was commissioned by TomTom and conducted by the research company Ipsos MORI in the period 1-19th of March 2012 in the UK, USA, Australia, Germany, the Netherlands, France, Italy and Spain. A total of 4,113 women were surveyed with children ranging in age from 2 to 8 years old.


An additional survey was carried out in New Zealand by the company Horizon Research in the period 31 March to 3 April 2012. A total of 1,117 women were surveyed, of which 632 had children aged 2-8.


  • In this story on the survey Fairfax reports comment from some Kiwi mums and says New Zealand mothers were the most creative at inventing games, bribing their children and lying in response to that back-seat whine, "Are we there yet?"


About TomTom

Founded in 1991, TomTom (AEX:TOM2) is the world’s leading supplier of in-car  location and navigation products and services focused on providing all drivers with the world’s best navigation experience. Headquartered in Amsterdam, TomTom has 3,500 employees and sells its products in over 40 countries.


Its products include portable navigation devices, in-dash infotainment systems, fleet management solutions, maps and real-time services, including the award winning TomTom HD Traffic.


Information on the world’s most up-to-date route planner, including live traffic information, go to


For further information, please visit