Travel to Work Report 2013

Apr 11, 2013, 04:00 ET from

MANCHESTER, April 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

A recent analysis of Census data by the popular cycling website, has highlighted some dramatic changes in how we travel to work.

The number of people who travel to work in England and Wales has surpassed 25 million for the first time. This is a staggering 12,000 million commutes per year¹.

The total population of England and Wales increased by +7% in the past decade but the rate of growth in the number of commuters is more than double this at +17%.

This has resulted in the highest ever proportion of the population commuting. According to Census 2011 data, 44.7% of the population travel to work against 41.0% in 2001, an increase of 3.6m people.

So not only are there more of us, there are also more of us commuting to work and at a higher proportion of the total population. This is perhaps a reflection on the current economic climate.

In Part I of the full report, we look at how each Region is affected in England and Wales.

  • London: There are +25% more commuters in London than 10 years ago.
  • South East: There are 4 million commuters, half a million more than 10 years ago.
  • North West: Above 3 million commuters for the first time.
  • Yorkshire & East Midlands: Each above 2 million commuters for the first time.
  • 9 of the Top 10 growth districts² over the past ten years are in the London Region.

Part II looks at Travel to Work by Method and discovers some significant trends over the past 10 years.

  • The number of Car Drivers has surpassed 15 million for the first time.
  • This equates to 7,325 million car journeys to/from work each year.
  • Public Transport commuters have increased by +27% since 2001.
  • Most popular method to travel to work, after cars, is On Foot which increased by +20%.
  • Car Passenger numbers continue to decline and are now almost half the ratio³ of 1981.
  • London: Car Driver numbers increased by just +1% (England Average: +16%). Is the London Congestion Charge having an impact?
  • London: Cycling commuters more than doubled (+109%). Is this the result of the London Bike Scheme?
  • London: The ratio using Public Transport is more than half of all commuters for the first time (52.6%).



  1. Allows for non-working days such as holidays.
  2. Number of people who travel to work in 2011 compared to 2001.
  3. The number of Car Passengers as a proportion of Car Drivers.
  4. Data has been rounded for ease of communication. Full data sources are available in the full report (see Notes to Editors).


The full report is available at the following URLs.



PART III:    Yet to be published. In Part III, we specifically look at Travel to Work by Bicycle and how each Region in England and Wales is evolving in these austere times.

This report was produced by cycling website,, as part of their analysis of UK Cycling habits with regard to commuting and how this compares to other forms of transport. The report uses data from the Office for National Statistics as provided by the Nomis website.

Permission is given for publishers to use extracts from the report but we would ask that where possible, the report author is credited, this being ( Copyright is held by, its Parent Company, the Office for National Statistics, Nomis and the Crown.

The website is run by a group of dedicated cyclists who are passionate about cycling. We provide articles on a wide range of cycling related topics.