Travelers say they would feel safer on a rocket to space than being a passenger in a self-driving or autonomous vehicle. However, if given the opportunity to use any of the current, experimental, or near-future methods of travel today, most Americans are at least somewhat interested in experiencing nearly all the new ways to explore the world, or even beyond it.
According to the annual Allianz Travel Insurance Vacation Confidence Index, only 22% of travelers are very interested (and 32% “somewhat” interested) in self-driving vehicles being developed by all the major auto manufacturers and Silicon Valley companies like Google, Uber and Tesla, with 65% of those not interested citing worries over “safety concerns.”
Self-driving/autonomous vehicles rate lowest for travelers “very interested” and highest for “safety concerns” among those not interested when compared to all other future travel methods surveyed, including space travel, supersonic travel, Hyperloop high-speed rail, and even so-called flying cars.
While the current outlook for traveler uptake of self-driving vehicles is uncertain, the future is brighter with 64% of travelers confident that this travel method will develop safely enough for them to consider using, which, along with Hyperloop high-speed rail (64%), is well above the confidence for the safety of supersonic travel (56%), space travel (51%) or flying cars (49%). In total, however, only a minority are “very confident” about the safety of any of these travel methods being safe enough for mainstream consumer use.