One in five Brits now work on their daily commute, new research revealed yesterday.
A study found millions of us are so swamped by work we check emails, make calls, update spread sheets or write to-do lists on the train or bus to the office. One in three said they work on the train to get a head start so they hit the ground running when they arrive at their desk. The study of 2,000 commuters also revealed more than half admit feeling smug in the knowledge they ticked off part of their to-do while some of their colleagues were still in bed.
Andrew Goldwater of business communications experts www.daisygroupplc.com, which conducted the research, said: ”The average British commuter spends over an hour a day travelling to work by train or by bus so hosted or cloud technology services that facilitate mobile working means this has become the real start of the working day.
”The hour-long commute is a long time to be sitting and doing nothing. It is positive news that people can use this time more productively.
”The morning in particular is where workers like to get one step ahead, plan what they are going to do with their day, and work through emails.
”The evening commute is where people are more likely to use the journey as well-deserved ‘down time’.”
The study also revealed one third of people simply like to daydream on their work commute – particularly on the way home. People watching, listening to music and reading a book are other ways people entertain themselves when travelling the same journey day in and day out. A quarter of people said they are more sociable as a direct result of commuting every day, while 37 per cent are happy to chat to complete strangers.
Listening on other people’s conversations, flirting with members of the opposite sex, and staring at hot looking people also help to alleviate the boredom. The study also shows a fifth of adventurous Brits have exchanged telephone numbers with someone they met on their commute.
A further 14 per cent have flirted outrageously with someone they fancied, while seven per cent went as far as arranging a date. Twelve per cent of Brits used their work commute to quit their job, while 13 per cent applied for new jobs.
Andrew Goldwater of Daisy Group added: ”It turns out trains and buses up and down the country are packed with people trying to fill the hours to get ahead of the game at work as well as finding entertainment.
”And because technology has come so far, people can do everything from conducting their weekly food shop to watching a movie or using social networking sites.
”People are traveling with laptops, tablets, smart phones, mp3 players and other gadgets which enable them to carry on as if they were sitting at home or in the office.”
TOP 20 COMMUTING PASTIMES
1. Day dream
2. People watch
3. Listen to music
4. Text friends
5. Read newspapers or magazines
6. Read a book
8. Listen in on other people’s conversations
9. Chat to fellow passengers
10. Plan what to cook for dinner
11. Use social networking sites
12. Shop online
13. Stare at hot looking people
14. Flirt with people
15. Phone friends
16. Play computer games
18. Drink coffee
19. Write to-do lists
20. Eat breakfast