Long commutes are bad for your health, happiness, and job satisfaction. On average, Americans commute 25.5 minutes each way, but some unlucky folks travel much longer than that in order to get to and from work each day.
(Photo Credit: Dorothee Hubner/Unsplash)
Recently, Quartz examined the counties in which workers have the longest median commutes, looking at both the wealthiest counties and all counties overall. These were the top 10, uncontrolled for wealth:
1. Pike County, PA: 43.3 minutes
2. Charles County, MD: 42.2 minutes
3. Bronx County, NY: 42.2 minutes
4. Richmond County, NY: 42.1 minutes
5. Queens County, NY: 42 minutes
6. San Jacinto County, TX: 42 minutes
7. Warren County, VA: 41.7 minutes
8. Kings County, NY: 41.3 minutes
9. Elbert County, CO: 41.1 minutes
10. Hampshire County, WV: 40.8 minutes
All in all, from a commute perspective, it appears to be bad news to live in a non-Manhattan borough of New York City or in an area surrounding (but not in) Washington, D.C. No real surprise there: both areas involve a high concentration of jobs located relatively far away from affordable housing. At least New Yorkers get to sleep in later than anyone else in the country, to make up for it.
How does this information help you? Well, if you’re in one of the areas with a long commute, at least you know you’re not alone. Although, your elbow-to-elbow, bumper-to-bumper trip to work probably clued you in about that.
If you’re contemplating a move to a place where your commute is liable to be longer, especially to take a particular job, you’ll want to keep this information in mind when you’re negotiating salary. While your prospective employer probably won’t be amenable to boosting your salary based on an increased travel time, you can work the number into your asking price, before the discussion begins. (Just make sure your range is appropriate, given the position and your years of experience.)
If that doesn’t work, you can angle for a day or two a week to work from home. You’ll probably wind up putting in more hours than you might in the office, which would make your employer happy, but best of all, you can do it without having to contend with traffic, transit delays, and the other myriad frustrations of commuting life.
Tell Us What You Think
How long is your commute? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.