From the making (and breaking) of a relationships, to the spilling of family secrets, taxi drivers have seen it all – with almost a quarter of Brits (23%) confessing their secrets to a cabbie, according to new research from ride-hailing app, FREE NOW.

The nationwide survey found that Brits are prone to pouring their hearts out to taxi drivers, with the most common confessions being affairs (37%), secret health diagnoses (35%), financial issues (35%), and pulling a sickie from work (38%).

FREE NOW’s survey of its drivers uncovered some equally outrageous secrets. Three quarters (75%) of drivers said that they had had a customer confess to having an affair, whilst a third (33%) have had a passenger say they’ve lied to their boss or work colleague. A quarter (25%) have heard about their customers’ financial difficulties, and the same number have been told about a One respondent witnessed a marriage proposal in the back of his cab, whilst multiple drivers have had a woman go into labour during a journey; and heart-warmingly, 25% of drivers have had a customer share the news that they’re expecting a baby. Conversely, a sixth (16%) had been told by their customer that they don’t love their partner.

So why is it that these vehicles have become modern-day confessionals? The biggest reasons include people knowing they were unlikely to see their driver again (23%), finding ease in confiding in a stranger (19%) and feeling trust in their driver (12%). When asked why they would tell all to a taxi driver, one person confessed: “Because of the intimacy created by being in a small space, with someone without making eye contact – it’s like [the] feeling of being in a confessional box.”

It may come as no surprise to learn that millennials are the most likely age group to air their dirty laundry in the backseat – with almost half confessing to having a huge argument in the back of a taxi (46%), breaking up with someone (40%) and having a cry (39%).

Londoners are most likely to confess a secret (46%), ranking the highest regionally, followed by the West Midlands (28%), with Northern Ireland ranking the lowest (6%). As regular ride-hailers, Londoners are also the most likely get up to no-good most frequently, with the highest rates across the board – whether that be falling asleep (44%), snogging (40%) arguing (37%), being sick (33%) or crying (33%).

Interestingly, the FREE NOW research also showed that men were more likely to have ‘fessed up’ to their driver (27%) than women (19%). The most common confession among men is that they’ve had an affair (40%), whilst for women, it’s skiving off work (34%) or admitting they are in love with someone that’s unavailable (34%).


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