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Health in a hurry: the impact of rush hour commuting on our health and wellbeing


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Publication date

Aug 2016


Over 24 million people commute to work each day in England and Wales – the majority of which are utilising largely non-active methods, such as cars, trains or buses. For many, this journey is synonymous with stress, frustration and anxiety. What is the impact on our health and wellbeing?
Our report, Health in a Hurry, highlights the impact of travelling to and from work by rail, bus and car (passive commuting) on the public’s health and wellbeing with longer commute times being associated with increased stress, higher blood pressure and BMI, and reduced time available for health-promoting activities such as cooking, exercising and sleeping.


Time Use, Well Being, Health, Commuting, and Travel



References: Künn-Nelen, A. (2016) ‘Does commuting affect health?’, Health Economics, 25(8): 984-1004. doi: 10.1002/hec.3199 , and Roberts, J., Hodgson, R., and Dolan, P. (2011). ‘“It's driving her mad”: gender differences in the effects of commuting on psychological health’, Journal of Health Economics, 30(5): 1064-1076. doi:

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