It's also not an unusual commute at all in the US. I commute about 23 miles per day each way, 46 miles round trip, and my wife about 10 more each way. I have had jobs where I commuted 40 miles each way. I've worked with people in Atlanta who commuted from Chattanooga TN (90 miles EACH WAY, 180 miles round trip) and Macon (more like 100 miles each way, 200 miles round trip) but the person who lived in Macon worked a job with 8 consecutive shifts of 10 hours each followed by six days off, so she commuted eight trips every two weeks, not ten.
Part of this is culture and the price of gasoline, even at today's prices compared to much of the world, but much is also just the sheer size of the US. A going with his father to see a football game about 800 miles away. Long as that is, it's less than 1/3 of the way across the country, and that's at the middle, not diagonally. Fly that 800 miles east from London and you'd be somewhere in Poland. Do it from the middle of France and you'd be almost to the Ukraine. In his case here he was a couple of states over, Oklahoma or Texas I think it was. The US is geographically big and though the population is centered in larger cities many people work in or near those larger cities and live outside a good ways. I COULD live close to my work. But a house comparable to the one I have would cost at least $100k more if it were within 5 miles of my job, and I don't even work inside Atlanta proper where it would be even more. It would take a LONG time to make up that in transportation costs differences, though for some people the aggravation and time are worth the compromise in housing. Other people are lucky enough to live where that's not a factor but the jobs in bigger cities usually pay enough to lure people here - then we look at the price of housing near those jobs versus the suburbs and how much nicer house we can have in the suburbs and a lot of people just say "#$%^ that, I'll put up with the traffic and drive!"
OTOH I work mostly nights. At night I can make the trip in 25 minutes. Mondays I go in during rush hour and today it only took 45 minutes, which is a very lucky day and also involved using a toll lane that saved me about 20 minutes and cost me about five dollars. A more typical time on Monday is an hour to an hour fifteen. On the thankfully very rare occasions I have been at work and left at 5 PM it can easily take 2 hours to 2.5 hours to get home. If I regularly had to work those hours I would move or, more likely, find a job with more flexible hours!
Last edited by Roger Cole; 05-20-2013 at 02:18 PM. Click to view previous post history.