The Economist has what seems at first to be a gloomy outlook on antisocial Britons staying at home:
The decline in visiting friends and family at home is harder to explain. Inflation-busting petrol prices may have deterred people from making social trips, whereas they have to keep shopping and going to work. Because new cars are more fuel-efficient than old ones, and because their price has risen less than other items, the cost of motoring has actually fallen in real terms. But, since many people focus on the cost per litre of petrol, rather than the cost per mile, rising pump prices may have had some effect on travel patterns.