Commuting for a job is never fun. When you’re tired and just want to sleep in, trudging an hour or two to the office really doesn’t seem worth it. At some point, everyone wishes their office was just a little bit closer, or conveniently, attached to their building. However, unless you have the ability to work remotely, you’re going to have to face that commute day in and day out, and that can definitely get old. But at the end of the day, making the commute is worth it, right? Not always. Sometimes a commute is simply too long and can have major effects on your life. Here’s how to know whether your commute is worth it.
“The cost of gas in one year can add up to $1,000 on average.”
Consider the costs
One of the biggest things to consider with commuting is the cost. If you choose public transportation and you’ll need to pay a monthly fare to get from bus to bus or ride on a train, which can add up to more than $100, or $1,200 a year. Other people may opt to drive, which can lead to fees for gas, parking, insurance and even loans if you’re leasing your car. While these numbers may vary, the cost of gas alone in one year can add up to $1,000 on average, according to Glassdoor. If you’re facing these costs, it’s important to determine whether they are worth it. While you may not be able to change the price of gas or the cost of a parking garage, it’s critical to consider how these prices weigh against the rest of your living costs, as well as your salary.
If you’re paying for a long commute and not getting paid a great amount, it may not be worth it to stick around at the company. However, if you love your job and are paid well but are commuting a long distance because of cheaper housing or a better school, it is important to think about its worth. For example, Fortune noted that if a person lives on a beautiful farm outside of the city and commutes in every day, but never actually takes advantage of the property, is it really worth it? Realistically, that same person may be able to find an apartment much closer to their office, but it may not have as much land to look over.
A long commute becomes a lot longer when traffic is involved. A decent commute becomes a lot longer when traffic is involved.
Think about your tolerance
When it comes to driving, everyone seems to have their limit. The average American commutes at least 25 minutes to work, which doesn’t seem too bad in the grand scheme of things. However, other people commute more than an hour – even two hours – just to get to the office. Yet some people don’t mind the long commute and think it may help them unwind. Others tend to get more and more stressed, causing them to perform poorly at work or begin to resent their job. Survey Sampling polled people on what causes them the most stress at work. While low pay was the number one answer at 35 percent, a long commute sat directly behind it. Approximately 33 percent of the employees selected for the poll admitted that their commute was the main cause of their stress at work. No one appreciates an irritable employee, and it may cost you friends and possibly your job, which definitely doesn’t seem worth it.
The effects on your personal life
While a commute may not seem that bad at first, when you consider traffic and inclement weather, that 25-minute commute can come close to an hour, which definitely isn’t fun. When people need to cut this much time, or more, out of their day to get to work on time, other parts of your life can be unexpectedly affected. One part that is often compromised by a long commute is a person’s social and personal life. A long commute can be mentally and physically draining, especially when you’ve been staring at the same license plate for over an hour. By the time you get home, you usually don’t have the same excitement you did when you got up this morning and left for work. If you live with a partner, he or she often gets the brunt of it. You may be too tired to cook, watch a movie or even go out for drinks with friends. The things you once appreciated can begin to dissipate, and it may take a toll on your relationships. Unless your job seems more worth it than your husband or wife, usually this long of a commute isn’t worth it and ends up being a major problem.
It’s important to keep in mind that everyone’s commute is different. However, if you’ve run into one of these roadblocks, it may not be worth it.
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