Overcrowding and smelly people: These are Londoners' biggest commuting complaints

Clara Guibourg
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Hey, having the office within walking distance would be nice (Source: Getty)

Rush hour traffic. Getting your face crammed into someone’s sweaty pits. Delays (or strikes…). Screaming toddlers. The list of our commuting woes could go on, but let’s stop there for the sake of everyone’s blood pressure.

Londoners spend 18 months of their lives commuting. Our daily journey to and from the office is a necessary evil, and there sure is a lot that drives us batty about it, as new research from MBNA Thames Clippers shows.

But what do we hate most about commuting? Shock, horror: It’s the lack of space. 16.3 per cent of those surveyed cited it as their biggest gripe.

It’s hard to argue with the fact that public transport would be much easier to deal with if there weren’t so many other… people on it.

Read more: The London commuter is a man in his forties working in finance

Related to this, our second-biggest bugbear is having to deal with other people’s body odour on a crowded Tube or bus. 7.9 per cent said smelly pits were the worst thing about commuting.

Most of us cope with the drudgery by blocking it all out best we can. 40 per cent say they read a book or newspaper, or just put on headphones and listen to music, or catch up on a TV show on the way home.

For most, this is the best we can to do make our commutes more bearable. But if you could pick any mode of transport, any at all, how would you choose to get to work?

When asked about their ideal commute, the people surveyed got creative to say the least.

One in eight Londoners say they’re jealous of “Harry Potter’s broomstick” and another 10 per cent would like Barack Obama’s Air Force One jet. Some eight per cent would rather have a license to kill - or at least a commute on James Bond’s speed boat.

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