Saturday, 19 March 2011

Travel Time Budget

For much of my working life I've spent an hour or so a day travelling to and from work. For a long time it was much worse - I used to spend several hours a day commuting. That was a bit of a pain, but it stopped more than ten years ago, when I moved to a job in Paris. Over there, the daily commute became much easier, because I lived close to the office, but every couple of weeks I would have a much longer journey back to the UK. Averaged over a month, I probably spent about the same amount of time travelling as I had in the UK.

My brother has just pointed out that it's possible that I have an innate need to spend an hour or so travelling each day. And so might you. It's all explained here.

On average, apparently, people spend about 1.1 hours per day on the move - regardless of their nationality, culture, economic system, or era. As travel has become faster they have tended to travel further - but the time that they spend travelling remains fairly constant.

Just over an hour a day comes to almost 8 hours a week. When I was spending more than twice that commuting it certainly felt like too much. These days I mostly work from home, and I doubt if I have to do more than a couple of hours travel in a normal working week. By the weekend that means I am falling short of my Travel Time Budget by about 6 hours. Which neatly explains why I enjoy spending one day of the weekend out on the bike. It seems that it's all part of some primeval need to balance time spent exploring with time spent hanging around the cave.

I've not been keeping count, but during the last week I probably spent less than an hour on necessary travel, then almost five hours today cycling (slowly) out to Christmas Common and back for fun. I followed the route that I tried to follow a few weeks ago, but this time I managed not to get lost. It was a lovely day for a ride - just a little bit of cold in the air and a slight wind, but clear and sunny, and lots of other riders out and about.

I thoroughly enjoyed myself, but more to the point, I am now only a couple of hours short of balancing my weekly Travel Time Budget, and tomorrow is another day.


Paul said...

I'll be giving up 6-7 hours per week commuting in a week's time. If the theory is true I should either find myself making extra car journeys or dusting off the pushbike and going out cycling. We'll see.

townmouse said...

Interesting. This probably explains why I'm so happy to cycle for an hour just to fetch the paper most days, given I no longer commute anywhere these days, thank the lord.

Samual said...

Great Blog. Jetlag can be anything from just a nuisance when you are traveling for pleasure, to a real problem if you have an urgent business appointment when you arrive at your destination.

Jet lag Symptoms

Tom Reddy said...

I am so happy some people love to cycling on vacation. it is good time-pass activity as well as exercise. thanks buddy your blog motivating to people and save the natural resources.

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