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London commuters could save £15,000 if COVID-19 work trends continue

Abigail Fenton
·Writer
·2-min read
A passenger wears a face mask as a precaution against the transmission of the novel coronavirus as she boards a London Underground tube train in London on July 17, 2020. - Boris Johnson said on July 17 he hoped Britain would "return to normality" by November despite being badly affected by the coronavirus and predictions of a second wave of cases during winter months. Johnson sketched out a timetable for easing the remaining lockdown measures in England, including lifting homeworking guidance and reopening sports stadiums and live theatre. (Photo by Tolga AKMEN / AFP) (Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images)
Boris Johnson said on July 17 he hoped Britain would "return to normality" by November despite being badly affected by the coronavirus and predictions of a second wave of cases during winter months. Photo: TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images

London commuters could save almost £15,000 ($19,657) over the course of their careers if COVID-19 travel trends continue, research suggests.

Londoners plan to go into their physical workplace one day less every week in 2020, even as “work from home” advice is lifted — meaning the cost of their commute tickets has been cut from about £124 a month to just £103 a month, Totaljobs found.

While this may not seem like a lot, if the trend was to persist, the £21 monthly difference would add up to £14,309 over an entire career — spanning about 47 years in the UK, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

READ MORE: Coronavirus — Wage freezes increase, but lower-paid workers recieve pay rises

The capital’s commuters could also win back about four months of their life, travelling to work on just 232, rather than the total of 363 in 2015.

It’s entirely possible that working from home will become “the new normal,” even after the pandemic, as many see cost and time savings, as well as increased productivity and well-being as good reasons to continue.

Some companies, such as Twitter, have already given employees the option to continue working from home beyond the pandemic.

READ MORE: Coronavirus — ‘Staycations’ costing a third of Brits more than a holiday abroad

So far in lockdown, a decline in commuting — and thus commuting costs — has already boosted Londoners’ finances. Two thirds (67%) reported being able to save money from their commute, with more than a quarter (27%) using it to pay back debts, and one in 10 (11%) even saving for a house.

Across the country, more than half (52%) of Brits are glad to cut back on commuting, saying they “do not miss it.”

However, this drops to just a third in London, with many missing having the time to catch up on podcasts or music (31%), read the news (27%), read books (34%), relax (20%), catch up on tasks (31%), and watch TV or movies (9%).