Getting to work isn’t nice at the best of times. Unless you live within walking distance you never know how long it’ll take, making us slaves to public transport. But would you move to make your journey easier?
Train overcrowding looks set to get worse in future, and come January there’ll be one more thing to add to the misery – rising fares.
Overall, fares will rise by an average of 6.2% but some unlucky commuters could be paying up to 13% more. Steep.
It looks like these drastic times are forcing people to resort to very drastic measures, with commuters saying they’d rather move house or job than continue to travel to work in this way.
How journeys will be changing
The research was carried out by reed.co.uk, and out of the 3,000 people it surveyed, 7% said they planned to make transport changes purely to avoid fare rises. An additional 6% planned to move house or job over the next 12 months just for an easier commute to work.
My journey is relatively straightforward, although it does involve getting an underground and overground train. While both services are often delayed or disrupted in some way, I won’t be rearranging my whole life to make my journey easier.
But, having listened to the ongoing gripes of colleagues who have much longer commutes, I can understand why some feel that enough is enough. Cancellations, extreme lateness and packed carriages are the norm.
The cost on the environment
And if I haven’t depressed you enough already, it gets worse. The report shows that people are also planning to return to their cars, predicting a rise of 6% driving to work next year.
That may not sound like a lot, but they’ll all be driving on their own. Then consider that people won’t be using greener travel options (like cycling and park-and-ride) any more than they do already. Plus, car-sharing, walking and running are all predicted to go down. All of a sudden, these transport increases seem to be having a very costly effect on the environment.
But the sad reality is that helping the environment usually comes bottom of a long commuting wishlist. I don’t blame people for choosing speed and comfort over longer, busier journeys, but I do wish they had some better options.