The average commute time nationally dropped 7% over pre-pandemic levels last year, with commuters saving around 17 hours annually as a result.

That’s according to recent Census Bureau data, which also reveals that the remote workforce increased 12 percentage points from nearly 6% in 2019 to just below 18% of the national working population last year. Analysts from CommercialCafe who parsed that data estimate that in 2019, there were nearly 9 million workers aged 16 years and older who worked remotely. By 2021, that portion of the workforce had increased to roughly 27.6 million workers, resulting in 18.6 million fewer commuters last year.

In 2019, daily commute times averaged 27.6 minutes each way. That figure dropped to 25.6 minutes each way in 2021, a savings of four minutes every commute day.

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