Having a job costs UK workers £91bn a year as the price of food, phone bills and childcare rises - but commuting has actually become cheaper

Emma Haslett
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At least these guys have a nice view in the morning... (Source: Getty)

It's one of life's great paradoxes: you go to work every day, only to be charged a hefty portion of your salary just for the privilege of being there.

Now research by Santander has worked out exactly how much UK workers are paying just to have a job: the answer is £91bn, or £3,405 each - 16 per cent of the average full-time worker's net income.

That's growth of almost six per cent since last year's figure of £3,218 - meaning the cost of having a job is growing at almost three times the average salary.

What's surprising is that the cost of commuting has actually fallen since last year, from £1,095 to £1,087. Those who travel by public transport are shelling out the most, spending £1,347 a year to get to work. Meanwhile, motorists spend £1,238 a year - £922 on fuel, £180 on car parking and £136 on tolls or congestion charging (which, incidentally, has risen by £50 from last year).

But the average cost of childcare has risen, from £943 a year to £960, while food and drink has jumped from £509 to £553.

Barry Naisbitt, Santander UK's chief economist, pointed out that workers were "of huge value to the economy".

"Employees re-invest a significant amount of the money they earn from work every month,” he said. Grudgingly, though...

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