A sense of ‘Bregret’? As Brexit looms, we’re revealing the true feelings of British parents around an EU exit

The triggering of Article 50 is potentially just days away and while there is much talk about the impact on business and the consumer from a broader sense, we’ve delved deeper to shed some light on how new parents, parents and families across the nation feel about Brexit.


comparethemarket.com canvassed parents across the nation for our first ever Parentdex. We found that many parents are resoundingly pessimistic about Britain leaving the EU, with almost half (47%) believing your children will be disadvantaged as a result. In fact, less than three in 10 (29%) of you believe that Brexit will be of benefit to your children!

parentdex report - Brexit impact on British parents

Advantage, Britain? 

Building on this, it became clear that you perceive a rise in the cost of living (46%) as the biggest potential disadvantage – or negative impact – that the next generation will experience as a result of Brexit. Interestingly, this was followed by anticipated difficulties in travelling to, or working in the EU (38%).

When it came to naming any positive impacts of Brexit, however, almost three in 10 (29%) of you couldn’t do so – stating that you felt there would be none.

Just a small proportion of you disagree with this sentiment – in fact, almost a fifth (19%) of you thought there would be more opportunity for employment, whilst a further 17% of you felt that it could lead to reduced pressure on public services. Also highlighted as an area to watch, 14% of you anticipated that it would improve national security.

What could the financial future look like for the next generation? 

Looking beyond the broader impact of Brexit, our Parentdex also explored your views as to what the financial future could hold for your offspring in a post-Brexit Britain. As it turns out, many of you were largely pessimistic about your child’s financial future – what’s more, over a third (35%) of you admitted that you were not at all optimistic about this.

Continuing to look ahead, less than a third (31%) of you claimed you feel confident in the current economy, while more than half of you across the UK (61%) believe you will need to provide more financial support to your children than you received from your own parents.

While the housing affordability crisis rumbles on, this is continuing to plague the concerns of many of you when it comes to financial planning for the future. In fact, over half (51%) of you admitted you’d like to help with a deposit for their children’s first home but are unable to – highlighting a stark contrast between your good intentions and means.

Simon McCulloch

Simon McCulloch



“What’s becoming clear is that while parents across the UK vary in opinion, there is still a strong sense of ambiguity around the impact of Brexit on future generations which – in turn – is generating a general sense of anxiousness amongst UK families.

“In fact, we found that over two thirds of parents from across the country feel that we are living in a period of economic uncertainty. What we can be certain about however is that, given this sentiment, it’s likely that many parents will be watching their wallets even more closely over the coming months.”

Calling for action – priorities for parents in 2017 

In addition to predicting the potential impacts – positive and negative – of a departure from the European Union, we also asked you what areas you would like the government to focus on most this year.

When it came to sharing what you want prioritised by the government in 2017, nearly two thirds (65%) of you chose Healthcare above Brexit (45%), the cost of living (36%), and education (34%). While the recent Budget made small headway in some of these areas, we will be watching this space closely to find out just how much difference a year makes!

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