Can I live with an hour and ten minute commute?

johmica

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Joined
Mar 10, 2011
Posts
950
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Berea, KY
Recently, someone reached out to me and offered me a job. I'd worked with the organization for a year back while in law school, and when they had a full-time position come open, they thought of me (it's been three years since I last worked for them, so I was flattered that they thought of me).

Here's the rub: my current commute of 30 minutes each way would more than double, to a whopping one hour and ten minute EACH WAY commute. There are complicating factors, that I'll try to cover now.

Moving closer to the new job is out of the question. We love our house, and we have two school-age kids in a school system that is one of the best in the state. So if I take the job, I'll be driving. However . . .

For eight- to ten months out of the year, I'll be allowed to tele-work twice a week.

So for most of the year, I'll spend two and a half hours per day commuting, three days a week, for a total of seven and a half hours per week. I currently commute every day, for a total of five hours per week. So my total weekly commute time would increase two and a half hours.

The factors leading me to consider the change: 1) more money. We're talking about a 22% pay increase immediately, and opportunities for advancement that simply are not available at my current job. 2) drastically less stress on the job. My current job is absurdly stressful. From the moment I walk into the office on Monday morning, until Thursday evening, I'm working at break-neck speed (Friday is kind of a breather day, with fewer demands on my attention). I usually don't get home on Mondays until after 7:30 or so, and I'm usually on work-related calls intermittently on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings.

The new job is the polar opposite. There's always work to be done, but for most of the year, there are no artificial deadlines. The work has to get done, but it's more research-oriented and not subject to difficult-to-meet timelines. If it weren't for the extreme commute, the decision would be a no-brainer.

I'm thinking that I could use the commute to catch up on music-related podcasts and such, but the thought of spending the next decade or longer making that drive certainly puts a damper on what would otherwise be an amazing opportunity.

Anyone out there made a long-distance commute on the reg? Any advice, insight, opinion?
 

SixStringSlinger

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Space
Just some perspective:

For most of the year, you can work from home twice per week. I'm assuming you'll take full advantage of that, meaning you'll work from home every single day you can.

So for that time, you'll be commuting 7.5 hours/week. That's a work day. On top of your 3 work days at work (which will involve the driving as well) and 2 work days at home. Just another way too look at the numbers that may or may not make a difference to you.

Is there a reason you can't work from home more, or nearly exclusively? If your work is research-based, what makes your butt's physical contact with their chairs necessary?

Otherwise, the change sounds great. Less stress, more pay, and the commute, while longer than your current one, is hardly abnormal.

Is there no train service you can take advantage of? The time won't change but it'll be more leisurely, and you'll have time to do any phone/internet-related "errands" so they won't encroach on your home time.
 

johmica

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Joined
Mar 10, 2011
Posts
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Berea, KY
Just some perspective:

For most of the year, you can work from home twice per week. I'm assuming you'll take full advantage of that, meaning you'll work from home every single day you can.

So for that time, you'll be commuting 7.5 hours/week. That's a work day. On top of your 3 work days at work (which will involve the driving as well) and 2 work days at home. Just another way too look at the numbers that may or may not make a difference to you.

Is there a reason you can't work from home more, or nearly exclusively? If your work is research-based, what makes your butt's physical contact with their chairs necessary?

Otherwise, the change sounds great. Less stress, more pay, and the commute, while longer than your current one, is hardly abnormal.

Is there no train service you can take advantage of? The time won't change but it'll be more leisurely, and you'll have time to do any phone/internet-related "errands" so they won't encroach on your home time.

1) It's a state job, so the "two days per week" tele-commuting policy is just institutional and non-negotiable.

2) No trains. It'll be interstate driving, with rush hour traffic while passing through Lexington in the evenings.
 

johmica

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Joined
Mar 10, 2011
Posts
950
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Berea, KY
If you’re getting home at roughly the same time as your current work days, which sounds like you could be, how stressful do you find driving versus your current work?

Cheers,
Geoff

This has kind of been my reasoning lately. Yes, the drive will be stressful, but it will be the only stress of the day. I'll be trading days filled with stress for days book-ended by stress.

I'm leaning toward taking the job. I've got to make my decision by the end of this week.
 

Ricky D.

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Oct 22, 2006
Posts
11,432
Age
70
Location
Marion, VA
What’s the mileage comparison? Figure fifty cents a mile minimum as your cost - your car wears out much faster with the longer commute.

If you have already identified an absolute deal buster, there’s your answer.

All those pros and cons you listed…just go with your gut. Your gut has already decided, now it’s waiting for your head to catch up.
 

tele12

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Dec 2, 2006
Posts
4,996
Location
NY
Recently, someone reached out to me and offered me a job. I'd worked with the organization for a year back while in law school, and when they had a full-time position come open, they thought of me (it's been three years since I last worked for them, so I was flattered that they thought of me).

Here's the rub: my current commute of 30 minutes each way would more than double, to a whopping one hour and ten minute EACH WAY commute. There are complicating factors, that I'll try to cover now.

Moving closer to the new job is out of the question. We love our house, and we have two school-age kids in a school system that is one of the best in the state. So if I take the job, I'll be driving. However . . .

For eight- to ten months out of the year, I'll be allowed to tele-work twice a week.

So for most of the year, I'll spend two and a half hours per day commuting, three days a week, for a total of seven and a half hours per week. I currently commute every day, for a total of five hours per week. So my total weekly commute time would increase two and a half hours.

The factors leading me to consider the change: 1) more money. We're talking about a 22% pay increase immediately, and opportunities for advancement that simply are not available at my current job. 2) drastically less stress on the job. My current job is absurdly stressful. From the moment I walk into the office on Monday morning, until Thursday evening, I'm working at break-neck speed (Friday is kind of a breather day, with fewer demands on my attention). I usually don't get home on Mondays until after 7:30 or so, and I'm usually on work-related calls intermittently on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings.

The new job is the polar opposite. There's always work to be done, but for most of the year, there are no artificial deadlines. The work has to get done, but it's more research-oriented and not subject to difficult-to-meet timelines. If it weren't for the extreme commute, the decision would be a no-brainer.

I'm thinking that I could use the commute to catch up on music-related podcasts and such, but the thought of spending the next decade or longer making that drive certainly puts a damper on what would otherwise be an amazing opportunity.

Anyone out there made a long-distance commute on the reg? Any advice, insight, opinion?

More pay, less stress. Take it.
 

Milspec

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Silver Supporter
Joined
Feb 15, 2016
Posts
6,385
Location
Nebraska
I used to have a 90 minute commute for a job that came with a $6 / hr. pay increase.

i did that for a little over a year, all interstate traffic, telling myself that it wasn't bad. Gas was cheap back then, but what became a problem was that the job was a 12 hour shift, so losing another 3 hours in driving time left exactly 9 hours for everything else including sleep.

As long as you have a vehicle that garners good gas mileage and the shifts weren't longer than 8 hours, it could work out but you do lose a lot of personal time over the course of the year.

These days, my commute is 20 minutes on a straight highway drive with minimal traffic. I like it a whole lot better, especially during the winter.
 

boxocrap

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Aug 26, 2021
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994
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north delta british columbia canada
Recently, someone reached out to me and offered me a job. I'd worked with the organization for a year back while in law school, and when they had a full-time position come open, they thought of me (it's been three years since I last worked for them, so I was flattered that they thought of me).

Here's the rub: my current commute of 30 minutes each way would more than double, to a whopping one hour and ten minute EACH WAY commute. There are complicating factors, that I'll try to cover now.

Moving closer to the new job is out of the question. We love our house, and we have two school-age kids in a school system that is one of the best in the state. So if I take the job, I'll be driving. However . . .

For eight- to ten months out of the year, I'll be allowed to tele-work twice a week.

So for most of the year, I'll spend two and a half hours per day commuting, three days a week, for a total of seven and a half hours per week. I currently commute every day, for a total of five hours per week. So my total weekly commute time would increase two and a half hours.

The factors leading me to consider the change: 1) more money. We're talking about a 22% pay increase immediately, and opportunities for advancement that simply are not available at my current job. 2) drastically less stress on the job. My current job is absurdly stressful. From the moment I walk into the office on Monday morning, until Thursday evening, I'm working at break-neck speed (Friday is kind of a breather day, with fewer demands on my attention). I usually don't get home on Mondays until after 7:30 or so, and I'm usually on work-related calls intermittently on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings.

The new job is the polar opposite. There's always work to be done, but for most of the year, there are no artificial deadlines. The work has to get done, but it's more research-oriented and not subject to difficult-to-meet timelines. If it weren't for the extreme commute, the decision would be a no-brainer.

I'm thinking that I could use the commute to catch up on music-related podcasts and such, but the thought of spending the next decade or longer making that drive certainly puts a damper on what would otherwise be an amazing opportunity.

Anyone out there made a long-distance commute on the reg? Any advice, insight, opinion?
you have an increase in salary 22%..so whats the cost of your commute...if you have less stress..and extra money (minus your expenses to commute..including wear and tear on you vehicle)..id say it's a no brainer..wouldn't you?..oh..does the increase in salary work out in terms of the extra commute? like..if you put in terms of an hourly wage..does the 22% more than cover the commute time given the car factors as well?
 

wrathfuldeity

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Joined
Apr 25, 2011
Posts
1,746
Location
Turdcaster, WA
Used to commute 75 minutes each way with a 10-hour workday 4x/wk in a high stress work with good pay. Traffic was not too bad due to going the opposite direction. However, it did take a toll on relationships with my 2 young kids, not being able to have quality time on a daily routine. Ya only get one chance with the kiddos. If I could do-over...its quality of life...not quality of work life...imho
 

RobRiggs

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Joined
Jul 8, 2015
Posts
1,256
Location
Calunicornia
I do a three hour to three hour and twenty minute commute five days a week. I love my job, and am well compensated. I also love where I live. I have audiobooks and satellite radio. Makes it tolerable. I consider the sacrifice worth it.
 

Twang-ineer

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Joined
Jul 24, 2019
Posts
272
Age
47
Location
Florida
More than an hour commute is not such a big deal in the era of podcasts and audio books. I did it for many years. What caught my eye was the stress situation. Being happier at work translates directly into the time with family , which really is only going to impact evenings as morning quality time with school age children is not really always quality time. So total you would be only missing another 30 min in the evening for most of the year. Less stress, with the opportunity to grow and have a more enjoyable career... with more cash in pocket? Buy a Prius and take the job.
 




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