2-hour Commute To Work – Does That Make Sense?

Some people are very lucky and live within walking distance of their workplace. But for other people who have to commute every day, fight horrible traffic and hordes of people to get to their office, it’s very stressful.

But how far is too far and do you lose too much of your time, money and nerves?

Whether you drive your car, get by bus, train, bike or metro, here we discuss this topic and try to get some answers.

Is 2 Hours Too Long To Drive To Work?

Every workday, millions of people commute to their offices and workplaces and often feel stressed even before they walk into their offices. Many workers said traveling is very stressful for them.


According to the US. Census Bureau, taking more than 90 minutes to travel each way, is an extreme commute. That is a total of four hours a day, five days a week.

There is no straight answer to this question – the acceptable distance to travel is one that fits you and your daily life. Some people can’t imagine driving more than 15 minutes, while others drive an hour and a half and they are just used to it.

You should feel comfortable with your commute.

Are 2 Hours Too Much?

It is a bit hard to say, also, there is a difference if you need to travel once a week or every day.

Every day – There is interesting research showing that the ideal commute is 16 minutes one-way. So, 4 hours in total, every day, really seems too much. On the other hand, each person should make a decision for himself.

Three Times A Week – It is still a lot of time on the road, but not as bad as it is when commuting every day.  If you have a good job, a good salary, consider all advantages and disadvantages of commuting.

Two Times A Week – That sounds much better. You might work from a home office and need to commute two times a week for some important meetings. It is much more tolerable than commuting every day for 2 hours one-way.

Once A Week – Compared to everyday commuting, this is like a dream. You will have a much free time for your family and your own hobbies. If you are satisfied with other things, like salary, the job itself, colleagues, then this isn’t so bad.

Why Not Move?

Of course, there are pros and cons of doing that, so here we’ll mention just some of them:

  • Some people live in small and beautiful villages and don’t want to live in busy and crowded towns.
  • Some people have their own houses or flats and don’t want to rent an apartment.
  • Others may see their current jobs as temporary and don’t want to rush with that big decision.

Why Accept Job With 2-hour Commuting?

When a good salary comes into the game, many people say: Oh, it’s a good opportunity, I don’t want to miss it!”

Yes, that can be true, but for how long and can money replace your free time?

a lot of money

The answer depends on each person. Mostly, salary is the main determining factor why people accept a 2-hour commute. When people hear the salary is good, they underestimate the stress of commuting.  Often, salary seems the most important factor and the value of time is neglected.

What Did Real People Say?

Also, we checked what real people said about this situation. We visited Quora and Reddit to find out what other people think. Check some thoughts in the pics below.

quora and reddit

How To Decide?

Well, it isn’t easy, because there are so many factors included. But before you accept the job with 2-hour commuting, do these things first.

First, visualize your day – Imagine how you wake up in the morning, drive for 2 hours, fight the traffic, navigate the crowds, go to the office, work, then again 2 hours on your way home.

making decision

Second, add costs  – Gas, tickets, maybe fast food a few times, and your money will easily disappear.

Third, your free time – do you have hobbies, do you volunteer in your community, help with your kids’ homework? You might not have time for these activities.

Fourth, job satisfaction – You’re fighting for more money, want to increase seniority – then that 2-hour commute is worth it.

Pros Of Long Commute

There are some positive things about that long commute. You’ll organize your life better and have a lot of me time while you’re driving.

  • Separated work life and home life
  • Listen to podcasts, and audiobooks – You can create your environment inside your car. For example, you can schedule some internal business calls during the commute. If you take the train, you can turn your laptop on and do some work. Listen to audiobooks that can don’t have time to read or podcasts you want to hear.
  • listen music while waiting

  • Better organization – When so much time goes into your commute, you’ll become a time organization master. You’ll spend your free time more efficiently than people who don’t have that long commute.
  • More productive day – When you’re aware you don’t have much time, you want to fill it with activities and all things you love to do.

Cons Of Long Commute

Of course, downsides are the main reason that causes this topic. So, let’s check some of them. Every person could add their own thought, but these are the most common ones.

  • Less Time For Family – The longer you commute the less time you’ll have for your family, hobbies, and free time in general.
  • Depression Issues – Some research claims that people with long commutes are more likely to suffer from depression, obesity and work-related stress. Long commutes are linked to stress and tiredness.
  • Bad Diet – Try to pack your snack and don’t drive hungry. It’s better to take your food from home, than to buy all these sandwiches, tortillas and other fast food. That will affect your body weight and health.
  • drive in food

  • Costs – You need to take care of your car, buy gas, pay transit prices and that costs. If you use your car every day for a long commute, it will have a shorter lifespan.

Tips To Help You Survive Long Commute

  • Leave on time  – Leave your home 15 minutes earlier, don’t wait the last possible second to get in your car. Why? Because you’ll worry all the way to work if you going to be late. That will exhaust you.
  • Don’t drive like a rally driver – This is quite dangerous, don’t do that. You can even cause some accidents with bad consequences. It’s not worth it.
  • rally driver

  • Be strategic – You can take a non-toll state highway home and toll road to work. You’ll save some money. Check which days have the heaviest traffic on your route and plan ahead.
  • Public Transportation – Leave your car at home, if you can. Take the bus or train, that will reduce your stress level. Then you can read books, emails, or even take a nap if you are tired.

Final Verdict

Does a 2-hour commute worth it – it is a bit hard to answer because there are many factors included, so you should think about all the positive and negative effects of it.
Remember that people often don’t think about the hidden costs of a long commute.

Mateja is a journalist with a Master’s degree. After graduating in 2019, she started writing copies for various websites before she joined the OfficeNeedle team in 2021. So far, she has built relationships with industry leaders and experts in the field that help her focus on writing useful tips for businesses. She enjoys writing informative pieces and doing research on businesses, as well as conducting surveys. She hopes her tips and other types of posts can help you kickstart your own business and stay alert to better adapt to any changes in the field.