London loves Thursday! 3.3m use Tube in return to (co-working) office – and the pub
Thursday is now the most popular day for London workers to head into the office – with over 3.3m jumping on the tube to join colleagues for after work drinks.
According to the latest ridership from TFL and WeWork shared exclusively with City A.M, Thursday is now the most popular weekday to travel on the Tube, reaching some 3.46 million journeys on February 23rd.
Post-covid, the City’s workforce has struggled to commit to five days in the workplace, with many offices now only requiring staff to come in two or three times a week – completing the rest of the week working from home.
This was coined as Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, or T.W.a.Ts, with backlash in some industries like banking and insurance.
With a much needed shot in the arm for London, the data, which was done in collaboration with WeWork, showed that Tuesdays and Wednesdays are equally popular days for commuters, as workers crave a break from working remotely.
WeWork said that it saw a 27 per cent jump during the week of March 6th in people booking their co-working spaces.
“With this new level of flexibility and more employees empowered by choice, it’s no surprise that Thursday is now our most popular day in the office.
“This is perhaps an indication that workers are planning their in-office days to coincide with collaborating with colleagues during the day and social plans that evening,” Ben Samuels, global head of sales at WeWork said.
Alex Williams, chief customer and strategy officer at TfL, added: “There are now more than 3m Tube journeys and at least 5m bus journeys made most weekdays, showing that people are increasingly returning to public transport to get around the city.
“The transformative Elizabeth line is also enabling more journeys than had been projected, with around 600,000 made using the line each day.”
Debbie, a personal assistant, from South-West London, told City A.M, that while the tubes may be significantly busier on a Thursday the rush is “worth it” as she can join her colleagues for post-work drinks and social events.
“Usually the Tubes are busy but it’s worth it as my team heads out to the local pub after work, and there is a good buzz around the office on a Thursday as everyone’s work load seems to have died down towards the end of the week,” she said.
A shot in the arm for London’s hospitality?
The move away from 5 days in the office has led to the UK hospitality industry warning it has made losses, with Thursday and Friday not being as lucrative as they once were. Energy costs have also put pressure on prices, with pints regularly now averaging over £7.
This morning, Tim Martin, the JD Wetherspoon boss, blamed “ferocious” inflation for a 91 per cent drop in profit.
Hospitality’s struggles have been exacerbated by repeated rail and tube strikes, which have meant people work from home more often, and don’t go out after work.
These are now ending with the RMT accepting a pay deal this week, meaning less rail disruption is expected.
Last week, hostility leaders criticised the government for not including overseas bar and restaurant workers in official figures, amid a major staff shortage, post Brexit.