Is it safe to leave children in the car when you are paying for petrol?

The debate has arisen again about if it is safe to leave your child in the car when you pay for petrol. I was reading different mums views and opinions on the subject trying to think about my own views.

Then it came to me. I would leave my little man in the car without even thinking about it – maybe that’s bad? Maybe I am just a mother who doesn’t think about the negative impact quite as much as I should?

Or is there that much of a negative impact?

Personally I pull up at the petrol station and get out the car. I fill up with fuel and then open the door and grab my purse, whilst chatting to little man and saying mummy will be 2 minutes. I lock the car.

I then walk the 10 metres to the mini shop where there is a full glass window for you to see the car, and I pay.

2 minutes later I am back in the car. No upheaval of a toddler. No tantrums or struggles with him now wanting chocolate from the shop.

Or I just use pay at pump – simple.

Now I must say that I do fill the car up very rarely. I am lucky that hubby does tend to do this for me. When I do, I usually don’t even have little man with me.

But, I genuinely did not think twice about whether I would leave him in the car to pop in to the kiosk and pay.

I was interested in reading and understanding other parent’s views; many of them were not the same as mine.

Some said they would get their baby/toddler out their car seat as there would be a risk the car would get stolen. Others said the car may catch on fire. Then others claimed that someone might steal their child.


I do totally appreciate all these ifs, but the chances are slim to none that these may happen.

Petrol stations are always well lit, and are quite small. The person in question would need to work pretty quickly to break in to your car before you or someone else spots them and runs the 10 metres to tackle them.

I would never fill my car up with petrol after about 9pm when it is dark. Nor would I leave my toddler in the car if I felt in any way uncomfortable with who was around.

It all comes down to common sense.

So I am interested to hear other parent’s views on this. Would you leave your child in the car while you pay for petrol?

Busy Working Mummy XOXO

*post first seen on



8 thoughts on “Is it safe to leave children in the car when you are paying for petrol?

  1. Oh this is a tough one. I think we have to use common sense. If you know the neighborhood, you are certain that it won’t take you more than a couple min and your child won’t over heat or freeze in the car, it should be fine to lock it and go… I feel you about bringing them and dealing with tantrums.. It may be a battle getting them back to the car. It’s really unlike the car will explode! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I would NEVER leave my child alone in the car while going to pay for anything. There are countless incidents here in Canada where parents have been arrested for this and ultimately have their children taken away. To me it is worth the inconvenience to unbuckle them and take them in with me.


  3. It’s all down to personal opinion and I would never judge either way. Personally I wouldn’t leave my little girl. One she wouldn’t let me. She would scream the place down and I just don’t think I’d feel safe leaving her.

    It all depends on the mum and the child.


    Liked by 1 person

  4. Errr I’m with you here, I’d not even thought about it being an issue. Having said that though, I’ve only ever filled up the car when it’s been middle of the day, somewhere quiet (so, in and out in a flash) and where I keep an eye on the car at all times. If I’ve needed to stop for the loo and to do a bit of shopping etc then she comes with me! #twinklytuesday

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m exactly the same as you! When she was a baby I always used to bring her into the kiosk with me as I could just carry the car seat in. It’s an absolute struggle now that she’s 2 and a half though, and I have no problem with leaving her for a couple of minutes. Like you said as long as it’s in the day time and in a place that you know, I think it’s absolutely fine. #twinklytuesday

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I have definitely left Zach in the car when I’ve paid for petrol as long as I can clearly see him. That said, I now make sure that I just go to the pay at pump so I don’t have to make that decision. It’s a bit easier now that he’s almost four and can just jump out with me if I do need to go into the shop buy it’s very rare that I have to! Thanks for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s