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Significant rise in long commutes to work, TUC reveals

22 Nov 2016

The number of workers with daily commutes of two hours or more has risen by 31% over the past five years, analysis from the Trades Union Congress (TUC) has revealed.

Based on unpublished Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures, the TUC’s analysis shows that, in 2015, 3.7 million employees commuted to work for two hours or longer. This represented an increase of 900,000 since 2010, when the number of workers commuting for two hours or more was 2.8 million.

The analysis also suggested that workers in the UK spent an average of ten additional hours commuting in 2015 than they did in 2010.

‘Stagnant wages’ and ‘soaring rents and high house prices’ are leaving workers unable to move closer to their place of work, the TUC suggested. It believes that these factors, combined with a lack of investment in roads and railways, may have led to the increase in travelling times.

Frances O’Grady, General Secretary of the TUC, commented: ‘None of us like spending ages getting to and from work. Long commutes eat into our family time and can be bad for our working lives too.

‘Employers cannot turn a blind eye to this problem. More home and flexible working would allow people to cut their commutes and save money.’