Back-seat drivers and bored kids spark in-car arguments
The survey, carried out by YouGov, reveals that unwelcome comments from back-seat drivers (38%), and children fighting, crying and shouting (17%), spark the most disputes when on the road.
Other sources of irritation include passengers adjusting buttons and dials (14%) or changing the radio station or choice of music (14%), and occupants leaving rubbish in the car (14%).
The research was carried out ahead of the launch of the Motor Ombudsman's "Stay cool this summer" social media campaign. Starting on Wednesday, the month-long initiative will offer consumers advice on how they can resolve disputes with their garage quickly and calmly in order to achieve a fair outcome and a positive ongoing relationship. There will also be a chance to win weekly prizes on Twitter and Facebook.
Asked how they handle in-car disputes, over half (53%) of people who have had an argument with passengers while driving said that they adopt a direct and firm approach for the behaviour to be nipped in the bud there and then. However, almost a quarter (24%) prefer a more "laissez-faire" approach, seeing if the situation improves before taking any action.
Bill Fennell, Chief Ombudsman and managing director of the Motor Ombudsman, said: "Although holidays are an exciting time, being confined to a small space on a long journey can cause tension in the car. As with any differences of opinion, whether with family or a business, it is important for all parties involved to take the time to try to conclude any issues in a cool and constructive way to help prevent the problems from re-occurring.
"However, just as importantly, the campaign is highlighting that there is help out there for motorists should there be a problem during the purchase, servicing or repair of a car that they haven't been able to sort out directly with their garage."