Luxembourg topped the rankings as the least stressful European country for drivers, in a study for Confused.com .
The western European country’s ranking reflects its consistently good scoring, and it was found to have low traffic congestion levels. It also recorded a fuel cost of just 0.002% of its average annual income and 3.58 road fatalities per 100,000 people.
The study calculated traffic congestion by combining the average number of hours lost to congestion in each country’s major city. Luxembourg recorded a low average of 30 hours, but Finland scored the lowest at just 16 hours.
Sweden ranked as the second-best country for road users, with the United States coming in third. The Scandinavian nation recorded less congestion and fewer road fatalities than Luxembourg but its fuel cost as a % of annual income was double.
A popular road trip hotspot, the United States has the highest road quality and lowest fuel cost as a percentage of annual income of all countries in the OECD. The sheer size and scope of the US make it vital to travel by road, with iconic trips like Route 66 and the Pacific Coast Highway.
But despite its high overall ranking, the US reported the highest number of road fatalities by far. The US also has one of the highest rates of car ownership, which makes accidents more likely to occur. Roads are also built with cars in mind, making them more dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists.
Iceland recorded the lowest number of road fatalities for its population than any other European country. Just 1.7 people per 100,000 population suffered a fatal injury on Iceland’s roads in 2019, suggesting safer road conditions.
The United Kingdom and New Zealand fell short of their neighbouring countries and ranked in 20th and 24th place respectively. New Zealand ranked poorly for its number of road deaths, while the UK was found to have high traffic congestion.
Between the calculated calm roads score and the world happiness rating for each country, a positive correlation was discovered. Luxembourg and Sweden both ranked in the top 7 in both reports. This suggests that in countries with calmer roads, the population rate themselves as happier