The great British commute: How long do you spend travelling?

Nearly one in ten Brits travel up to three hours or more each day. This amounts to 720 hours or one month every year!

In the UK, as many as 91 per cent of us commute to and from work each day. According to new data from a recent YouGov survey commissioned by PeoplePerHour, nearly one in ten (nine per cent) commuters travel three hours or more every day, amounting to 720 hours a year spent in your car, on the bus or on the train!

More than a quarter of Brits (28 per cent) have a relatively short commute of up to an hour each day. However even with such a comparatively brief journey, that is still as much as 240 hours a year (or ten days) spent travelling to and from work.

Workers in Wales, are likely to have the shortest commute – with one in five traveling just 7.5 minutes each way. Wales also has the highest overall percentage of homeworkers, with 13 per cent of the workforce working from home. The longest commute of all the regions is in Scotland, with eight per cent of Scots commuting more than three hours for work per day.

But what if there was a viable alternative to wasting time, energy and money before we have actually earned any? Well, working from home can be an alternative for many different types of workers throughout the UK. Less than half (44 per cent) of the self-employed work from a home office, while just two  per cent of the employed work from home. Home working is popular with the over 55’s with as many as 12 per cent of total workers of that age working from home.

Home working can be as basic as stuffing envelopes for marketing companies or running an entire business from your residential premises. The most lucrative professions that allow you to work from home include freelance writers, graphic designers, architectural service providers, financial advisors, marketing and promotional services providers.

Overall, only seven per cent of the total UK working age population work from home. With advances in technology and virtual offices being able to operate successfully from remote locations, future generations will be able to do away with wasting time commuting completely.

Xenios Thrasyvoulou, founder and CEO of PeoplePerHour comments, ‘It’s time that employers realised that seeming productive isn’t the same as being productive. Most people are at their most productive when they are well-rested and relaxed, but a long commute will leave most employees tired and stressed before the working day has even started. Allowing employees a more flexible work schedule can have huge knock on benefits to company productivity so it’s a win-win.

‘Of course the self-employed have much more autonomy and choice. 44 per cent work from home and another large percentage of those will work out of co-working spaces or similar. The average freelancer on PeoplePerHour will likely work with five clients or more per week and therefore travelling to see each one would be impractical so most work gets done remotely.

‘Remote working is the future of the office and the self-employed have taken the opportunity on board early on and embraced the tech advancements that make collaboration possible across continents and timezones. Hopefully the tide will soon turn for the rest of the employed population and both business and the workforce will benefit.’

Further reading on commute

Start-up owners ‘save on commuting time’

People starting their own business save up to three working weeks a year in commuting as they can choose where they work, meaning they have more time to invest in the company.

The average commute for a business start-up owner is five hours and 25 minutes a week, compared to seven hours and 55 minutes for an employee, equating to a total saving of 120 hours a year, according to research.

Findings from a survey showed 15 per cent of those who chose to set up their own venture were travelling for ten hours a week before starting their own venture.

The research discovers one in three small to medium enterprise (SME) bosses now commute for under an hour a week, suggesting many work from home.

Owen Gough, SmallBusiness UK

Owen Gough

Owen was a reporter for Bonhill Group plc writing across the and titles before moving on to be a Digital Technology reporter for the

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