Lighter Side: The calm and soothing side effects of… commuting?

Contrary to common perception that packed transport systems might just stress us out, one study has concluded that the daily commute actually makes most people more relaxed. Really?

Lighter Side: The calm and soothing side effects of… commuting?
“I can’t wait for my commute home,” – it’s a phrase I can honestly say I’ve never heard anyone utter before but, according to one recent study, most Canadian workers do actually enjoy their journey home.   

The study, conducted by the Gandalf group, found that a surprising 77 per cent of Canadians say they’re in a better mood after their commute and even find it relaxing.

The online survey was commissioned by Toronto add agency Bensimon Byrne and stretched over a number of regions across the country, including Quebec and the GTA, reaching 1,500 people in total.

``The results are an eye-opener and contradict the prevailing narrative of commuting — which is often conveyed as long and negatively affecting our work-life balance,'' said Max Valiquette, Bensimon Byrne’s managing director of strategy.

The survey questioned commuters who use public transport as well as commuters who use personal transport but, surprisingly, responses didn’t vary dramatically.

Take a look at some of the findings below:
  • 56 per cent of drivers strongly agreed that their commute is an opportunity to have some quiet time by themselves compared to 49 per cent of public transport users.
  • Transit users tend to face a more difficult commute than drivers but use their time to rest and relax. 
  • 75 per cent of commuters would prefer to be lone during their commute. 
  • While GTA commutes tend to be longer, they’re only marginally less enjoyable - 72 per cent reported enjoying their journey, compared to the 77 per cent national average. 
  • Two thirds of respondents reported having a commute of 30 minutes or less. 
  • 25 per cent of commuters use public transport while six per cent choose to walk and two percent cycle.
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