PORTLAND, Ore. — People living in and around Portland will spend about 215 hours, or nearly nine full days, commuting to work in 2019.
This calculation is based on the average one-way commute time in the Portland metro area of 26.6 minutes, according to the most recent US Census Bureau. The good news for Portlanders? That's not even close to the longest commute time in the country, a distinction held by other large metro areas like New York-New Jersey (37.5 minutes) and Washington D.C. (34.4 minutes).
Educated Driver created an interactive map that allows you to see average commute times across the country. To see the commute times where you live, zoom in on a location and click on the shaded area.
Commute times aren’t likely to improve soon, but if you’re tired of the traffic, the Portland metro area has good options for public transportation. According to the latest US Census, about 6.5 percent of people in Portland and surrounding areas commute by public transit. That’s far less than other large metro areas, like New York City (31 percent), the Bay Area (16.5 percent), and Washington D.C. (14 percent).
Whether you use public transit or are in your car during your commute, here are some ideas on how to productively use that time.
- Take care of business calls
- Catch up with family by phone
- Listen to informational podcasts
- Reflect and relax
To get the number of hours spent commuting each year, Educated Driver multiplied the average number of work days per year by average round-trip commute time. The average person works five days per week. Multiply that by 52, the number of weeks in a year, to get 260 working days per year. Then, subtract the number of vacation days the average worker takes per year (17.2, according to this study). That comes out to 242.8 work days per year for the average American.
Multiply 242.8 (work days) by 53.2 minutes (Portland’s average round-trip commute time) and you get 12,917 minutes, or 215 hours, or nearly nine days that the average worker in the Portland metro area will spend commuting to work this year.
Jared Cowley is a digital producer for KGW.com. You can reach Jared on Twitter @jaredcowley.