Working Women’s Journeys

An Overview of the Relationship between Commuting and Gender

Working Women’s Journeys

The cost, method and distance of travelling to work are important considerations for everyone when accessing employment, but what are the differences for men and women?


Commuting by car almost equal for men and women

Historically, considerably more men than women travelled to work by car. Recent statistics reveal that the figure is more equal nowadays, with 65% of men and 63% of women using this method. This means fewer women are now dependent on public transport to get to work.

However, economically inactive women are the group least likely to have access to a car, which reduces their opportunities to find employment.

Commuting distances underpin gender stereotypes

Men travel further to work and are more likely to earn more, reinforcing the idea that they are the breadwinners. Women are more likely to work closer to home and part-time, making it more convenient for them to take on the lion’s share of the domestic and caring responsibilities.

Cost penalties for part-time workers

Travel passes for public transport tend to benefit those who travel most frequently. Since the majority of part-time workers are women, they are at a disadvantage as they do not benefit from the largest discounts.

Working women’s journeys

Chwarae Teg’s new report, Working Women’s Journey’s, provides a snapshot of the current situation in Wales regarding men and women’s commuting patterns and provides some recommendations on how we can improve transport provision.



Working Women’s Journeys. ( September 2016 ). An Overview of the Relationship between Commuting and Gender.

Download the full Report: PDF.

Executive summary and recommendations: PDF.

Full report