It’s no surprise that having a job can be expensive, especially if it’s some distance from where you currently live. As much as it would be great to live only a few minutes from your workplace, the reality for most is you’ll spend plenty of time each week commuting to and from work. If you do so by train, then you may be concerned by the news that rail fares have risen by 2.7% this year. Of course, it’s not only train passengers hit by the cost of commuting, with people who choose to drive or commute by bus also feeling the pinch on their income from daily travel. So, is there a way your commute can be more financially beneficial?
How Much is My Commute Costing Me?
Even if you have never taken the time to work it out, you’ll probably guess that the amount of money you spend on commuting to and from a workplace is high. If you’re a train commuter, then you probably have a better idea, especially if you have a season ticket loan through your employer. On average, it costs workers £795.72 over the course of a year to get from your home to work, then back again. This accounts for a total of 251 hours, working out to roughly 10 days. That’s a lot of lost time that the majority of the working public can attest to. There’s no wonder then that many people look to alleviate this time and cost by either relocating to a property closer to work or vice versa. The reality however is this isn’t always a cost-effective solution.
Even the most affordable commuter towns have seen rising costs, with house prices growing at their fastest rate in the last 18 months. With all these essential costs in our daily lives, it can put huge strain on other areas of expense. Say for example you have an unexpected bill crop up, how would you be able to cover the costs when wages are tight? For some, dipping into savings will be the best option, however those without these available funds may look to short term loans to assist in a financial emergency. When there has been rising costs throughout your weekly or monthly spend, havingefficient and speedy options can alleviate the strain. However, it’s important to consider all your options before making any commitment to borrow further money.
London Vs the Rest of the UK
There is a clear divide when it comes to workers who live or commute to London and those further from the capital. There has been a sharp rise in the amount of people moving from London to the North of England in the last decade. In 2009, just 1% of workers swapped cities to further North, whereas last year 13% made the switch. The drivers behind this are not only work/life balance, but expenses.The average house price in the North of England is much lower than in the South-East, even though house prices have risen across the country by 2.2% in 2019. Add to this a lower cost to commute, there are many reasons workers may look to leave working in London behind.
If moving up North is not a viable option for you, what else can you do to help lower your travel costs? You could of course walk or cycle to work, but this is only feasible if your commute is still reasonable. Another option that is seeing a growing trend to avoid the cost of commuting is by not commuting at all. Of course, this will not be a realistic option for many people.
Leaving the Office Behind
This option is made possible by flexible working, and it’s seen nearly a quarter of UK workers across the country work in this way. The Office for National Statistics reported around 4.2 million people took up this trend in 2015, with the figure five years later higher still. As well as saving on the average cost of commuting, many flexible workers have found other financial benefits such as cheaper childcare. This is all knocks-on to employers who with more remote workers can save money on office space costs.There’s even reports that some workers have built garden sheds to work from, saving thousands on annual expenses. One in three sole traders choose to work in this way, slashing the costs of their work expenses and contributing £17 billion annually to the UK economy.
If some of these solutions seem difficult to make a reality, it’s best to focus on smaller aspects of your monthly expenditure. Rising commuting costs are an inevitable part of working life, so reviewing your monthly spend and making small changes along the way can help in a big way. You’ll be able to see how much you can afford after your essential outgoings, allowing you to afford any short term lending you may need in the future.
Here at Wizzcash, we can provide loans for emergencies with our short term payday loans. If you require between £200 and £1000 to help you cope with a financial emergency, we may be able to help. For more information, please browse the rest our website, or contact us directly.