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Americans are Wasting a Day Sitting Alone

by Alyssa

· rideshare,commuting,data,blog

We dove into a decade of data on how North Americans are commuting and the numbers are startling given all the changes in technology and how we work. 

Americans who travel to work spend 138 hours a year commuting - more than 3 weeks of vacation time - with 80% of them sitting alone in their cars.

Another 20% of Americans are outside enjoying fresh air, reading on the ride to work or socializing with colleagues on the way to workAmericans are spending more time commuting and fewer are sharing rides to work than a decade ago. Commute times have increased by an average of 2 minutes more a day since 2006, totaling to an extra 8 hour shift each year. Shared rides to work have decreased by 2% from 2006 to 2016. Yet the key to a better commute might be sharing that ride to work. 

Canadians are spending less time driving alone. Their commute time averages at 114 hours per year and Canadians share rides to work more than Americans, with 13% riding to work together compared to 9% of workers in the U.S.

While some experts think the growth of freelancing and working at home has reduced the number of people commuting, only 5% of Americans work from home according to the most recent data from 2016. That’s only a percentage point more than in 2006. Millenials are largely driving that trend with a growth in working at home from 2.7% to 4% over the same time period. Yet Millenials are also the biggest users of shared rides to work. In the U.S., Millennials share rides to work at a rate of 13%, surpassing the 11% of Gen Xers and 9% of Baby Boomers.

Some studies have shown growth in ride hailing for non-work travel but not a budge in the most frequent trip North Americans are taking - the trip to work. Estimates from 2016 put the figure at less than 1.8% of Americans are using taxis or ride hailing apps to get to work. Even fewer Canadians are ride hailing for that trip to work, less than 1 percent.

With RideConnect Communities, it’s super easy to connect with colleagues on your commute. Getting to work is cheaper and more convenient. When you join RideConnect your friends, or anyone with whom you have directly connected, are in your Private Community. Friends of friends or friends of your direct contacts are also available. To connect with more people, all you have to do is save their phone number in your phone and have them do the same with your phone number, that’s it. Use the share icon to share RideConnect with more friends or colleagues with whom you wish to ride. Using RideConnect Communities you can ride with people you know and trust.

You can expand your RideConnect Community beyond the folks in your phone’s contact list by signing in with Facebook. If you’re already on RideConnect you can add your Facebook friends by going to Edit Profile, then click Social Network and sign into Facebook. And we don't read your data. The app only adds your Facebook friends to your RideConnect Community list, nothing more.

You can also make your own rideshare to create a carpool group for your office complex, town or neighborhood with our Rideshare Channels! Find out more about making your own Rideshare Channel.

All data for this analysis was sourced from the United States Census American Community Surveys 2006-2016 and Statistics Canada 2016 Census: Journey to Work Key Results.

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