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Transport cost rises continue to put pressure on households


Transport costs have risen in every Australian capital city and region throughout the past quarter, according to AAA research.

The Australian Automobile Associations’ (AAA) March 2018 Transport Affordability Index shows the average Australian metropolitan household is now spending $17,912 on transport costs per year, an increase of $306 from the previous quarter. The report also shows the average regional household now spends $14,326 annually on transport, an increase of $318.

While the majority of city and regional locations saw increases in average weekly earnings, the cost of transport outstripped these gains, with transport costs as a percentage of income increasing by one percentage point to 14.3 per cent in cities and 12.5 per cent in regions.

AAA CEO Michael Bradley said: “This report shows Australian motorists continue to experience increasing pressure from rising transport costs with every city and region measured seeing increases.

“Policymakers around the country need to be aware that households are facing these rising costs and look at ways to keep them in check.“

The increase in costs over the quarter was largely due to an increase in interest rates on new car loans; the average cost of the top 10 selling vehicles; fuel price changes; and price changes relating to comprehensive insurance and public transport.

Key findings:

  • The average annual cost of transport for the city household increased over the quarter by $306. The largest increases occurred in Darwin and Canberra at $512 and $421 respectively.
  • For the regional household, the annual average cost of transport increased by $318 per year over the quarter. The largest increases occurred in Alice Springs and Bunbury at $482 and $379 per year respectively.
  • Sydney remains the most expensive capital city in Australia, in terms of total dollars ($22,313) per year. However, Sydney is more affordable when transport is considered as a percentage of average income (15.2 per cent this quarter compared to 15.5 per cent in December 2017).
  • In the March 2018 quarter, Melbourne remained the second most expensive city for transport at $19,810 per year.
  • Brisbane remained the third most expensive city, equivalent to $19,561 per year in total dollar terms but is the most expensive city when average income is taken into consideration at 16.3 per cent.
  • In total dollar terms, Hobart recorded the lowest city household transport costs at $15,320 per year. This represents an increase of $342 over the quarter.




Media contact:

Jonathan Hawkes
0434 660 801
[email protected]

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