Homeworkers live fifteen minutes further away from work

A one-way journey from a worker’s residence to their employer's permanent address was 32 minutes on average in 2023, according to survey respondents. When people who work from home travel to work, they need to commute for 15 minutes longer than those who work on location, on average. Reducing commuting time and costs is therefore an important reason for them to work from home. This is evident from new figures taken from the Netherlands Working Conditions Survey (NEA), conducted by Statistics Netherlands (CBS) and the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO).

In the 2023 survey, a few questions were asked about commuting times among workers aged 15 to 74. Respondents were asked to estimate how long, on average, it takes to travel one way from their home to their employer's permanent address. According to the majority of workers (67 percent), the trip to work takes 30 minutes or less, while 10 percent travel for more than an hour.

One-way commuting time for homeworkers averages 40 minutes

Almost half of all homeworkers work from home only some of the time. Homeworkers said that a one-way trip to their employer’s address takes an average of 40 minutes. The average commuting time among people who do not work from home (on-location workers) was 25 minutes.

Those who work at different locations have a longer commuting time to their employer's address than workers who travel to a fixed work location. There is also a group of workers who work from home all the time. A journey from their home to their work location would take 53 minutes on average, more than twice as long as the commuting time among people who work on location.

More people work from home when commuting times are longer

The extent to which workers do or do not work from home is strongly correlated with the time it takes for them to travel to work. The majority of workers in the group with a relatively short commuting time (one-way trip of up to 20 minutes) do not work from home. When the average commuting time is between 21 and 30 minutes, the ratio of homeworkers to on-location workers is approximately equal. When commuting times are longer than 30 minutes, a majority of workers work from home sometimes.

Workers' commuting time to work1), 2023
Reistijd (enkele reis)Homeworkers (%)On-location workers (%)
0-10 minutes25.774.3
10-20 minutes36.763.3
20-30 minutes48.551.5
30-40 minutes58.042.0
40-50 minutes64.735.3
50-60 minutes68.631.4
More than
60 minutes
1) one-way commuting time from worker's residence to employer's address

Commuting time and costs are both reasons for working from home

Both people who work from home and those who work on location were asked about their reasons for doing so. Slightly more than half said that reducing commuting time and costs was their main reason for working from home. Another frequently mentioned factor was that people get more work done at home (53 percent). The ability to combine work and personal life more easily (57 percent) was mentioned the most often. The most frequently mentioned reasons for travelling to the work location were social contact (70 percent), attending meetings and staying up to date on work matters.

Workers' reasons for combining working from home and on location1), 2023
Reden% (%)
Top 3 working from home
Easier to combine
work and personal life
Getting more
work done
at home
No commuting
time or costs
Top 3 on location
Sociale contact69.7
Attending meetings65.0
Staying up to date on
work matters
1) multiple answers possible