Company cars lose allure as more employers switch to cash allowances

UK companies are moving away from company cars, choosing to provide a cash allowance, instead, new research has revealed.

A survey conducted by business consultants Watson Wyatt, found that three in 10 respondents provide a cash allowance instead of a car, double that of four years ago, and overtaking the number of companies (23%) that offer company cars only.

Data from Watson Wyatt’s 2008 Company Car/Cash Allowance Report, which covers 38 countries, found that 46% of employers still offer a choice of car or cash, bringing the proportion of employers providing either cash instead of or as an alternative to a company car to three-quarters.

Across the rest of Europe, however, Watson Wyatt found the direct provision of a company car is still largely the norm. Seven in 10 employers in Belgium, Greece, Italy, Portugal and most central and eastern European countries provide company cars only, without a cash alternative.

Anne Severeyns, a senior consultant at Watson Wyatt, said defining the best possible car strategy is an important challenge for many employers.

“The survey shows that the business of providing either cars or cash allowances as an alternative is attracting more and more attention across Europe, Middle East & Africa,” she said.

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