How Your Commute Can Impact Your Health & Wellbeing

How Your Commute Can Impact Your Health & Wellbeing

Whether your journey finds you packed onto the train like a sardine or sitting stationary on a motorway that has started to resemble more of a car park; the office commute is rarely an enjoyable experience. A lengthy commute has become commonplace across the nation, with over 3.7 million UK workers commuting over two hours to their workplace every weekday and the average daily commute lasting 54 minutes.


Quite aside from the time taken to travel to work, research shows that commuters are finding the journey increasingly stressful. Ford surveyed 5,500 commuters in six major European cities (London, Rome, Paris, Madrid, Barcelona and Berlin) to find out how their journey to work affects their stress levels. Those travelling in Rome reported the highest stress levels, whilst commuters in London were a close second. Travellers in both cities said that they found their morning commute more stressful than moving house or going to the dentist – some even remarked that they found travelling to work more stressful than being at work!


Those travelling in the UK capital city found their journey to be the most unpredictable when compared with the other four major cities surveyed. This was proclaimed as the main cause of stress whilst commuting and to combat the uncertainty, a quarter of commuters set off at least half an hour earlier each day to combat any possible tube delays, busy rail carriages or extra traffic. However, by getting on the road or train carriage thirty minutes early, commuters lose the equivalent of five days of spare time every year.


Most concerning of all, however, is the long term health implications of a long and stressful commute to the office. The experience can lead to high blood pressure, making conditions such as strokes more likely in later life. Research showed that fraught journeys also increase snacking habits, leading to unhealthy food choices and the well-documented health issues that they can cause. A long commute can also cut down on the amount of time available to exercise each day and affects commuters’ general sense of happiness and satisfaction. One recent report suggests that the cumulative effect of all of these factors is shaving years from the life expectancy of many commuters.


When looking at the above evidence, it is clear to see that commuters’ misery is not just in the mind. Understandably, many workers are looking to avoid an arduous commute as much as possible, opting to work for companies based closer to home and outside of the capital. Flexible office space outside of the capital provides a great solution to help business owners make manageable commutes a reality.


The Arena portfolio contains two centres in the key commuter locations of Basingstoke and Farnborough. Both centres offer exceptional office accommodation and are extremely well-located just a few minutes’ walk from Basingstoke and Farnborough (Main) train stations respectively. Enjoy easy access to our centres from other nearby commuter belt towns such as Winchester, Fleet and Reading – whilst saving on London-weighted workplace costs. So instead of fighting your way to the capital, why not ditch the long journey and consider one of our commuter-friendly centres instead?


How long is your daily commute to work? And what would you do with the extra time you could save by reducing your commute? 


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