Dan Gold/Unsplash

Cutting Commutes Gives Time Back to Workers

17:00 September 15, 2020
By: Melanie Hucklebridge

Commute time to work used to be one of the deciding factors in whether or not you would take a particular job. Transportation to and from work adds time to a workday, and many would prefer it to be as short as possible, while still living in an area that our bank account allows. In a report done by CoPilot.com, researchers found that Louisiana workers were spending an average of nearly 10 percent of their work week commuting. Since the stay-at-home orders were put in place, many workers have shifted to working from home, giving them nearly four and half hours of their workweek back.


The average amount of time that a person spends commuting to work and the average number of people who commute by car has been rising steadily over the past decade. The U.S. Census Bureau has shown that in 2018, the average commute to work was just over 27 minutes, while in 2010 it was only around 25 minutes. Rising commute times and numbers of cars on the road can have negative effects on health. According to CoPilot.com, research found that workers with longer commutes are more likely to suffer from back pain, high cholesterol, and obesity. Higher levels of stress were also reported. Traffic jams are stressful and often are the cause of automotive problems, due to the cars' idling for extended periods of time. Not only does it increase physical injuries, but it can also lead to more accidents when cars are stuck in traffic delays. Economic costs exacerbate the disadvantages of high commute times, as gasoline for cars is wasted while in those same traffic delays.

Remote working has been steadily becoming more common, but as a result of COVID-19, this is many people's only option for work. The CoPilot.com report also showed that workers who are new to remote working have gained an average of almost 10.4 percent of their workweek back. The time that workers gain back, however, does factor on their location. Remote working is by far one of the safest options now, and people who are new to working from home have likely experienced this gain of time and enjoyed the benefits. Workers in places like New York, California, and Maryland reclaimed more time, while central states like Wyoming and the Dakotas are likely saving less than others. Workers in New Orleans gained back an average of 4.2 hours per week, which is nearly 10 percent of their workweek.

[Manki Kim/Unsplash]

Working from home is said to have numerous benefits, aside from helping reduce carbon emissions. According to an article with themuse.com, working remotely is beneficial to your mood and work productivity. By making anywhere in your home your office, you are less likely to get bored with your same set up. It is also easier to have meetings and pick up skills that are necessary in business. Sensitivity to other people's schedules and even writing betters emails can be achieved through working remotely. The time that is gained back from not having to commute can be used to eat breakfast before work, take those extra five minutes in bed, and even spend more time at dinner with your family. Too much time at home might not be great, but the benefits to working remotely keep increasing.

If you would like more information on the report, click HERE.

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