My actual dollars per hour

I live in Madison but work in the suburbs. I take the bus because I don’t have a car. I recently had the idea to factor in my travel time when figuring out my dollars per hour, and the result isn’t pretty. From the time I leave to the time I return at night is 10.5 hours. This makes a big difference when I look at dollars per hour. Let’s look at an example

$15 dollars per hour* x 8 hours a day = $120 / day

Now let’s look at it with travel time:

$15 per hour x 8 hours a day = $120 / 10.5 hours = $11.43/hour

Adding in my travel time reduces my $/hr from 15 to 11.43.

What does this mean to me? I know that I would not be riding the bus for fun if not headed to work so it is fair to count it as “work” in my mind. I should move closer to work. If I could cut my time away from home from 10.5 hours to 9 hours (8 hours of work + .5 hours lunch + .25 hours to and .25 hours fro) my new $/hr would be:

$120 / 9 hours = $13.33/hr. Moving closer to work and cutting my commute would be like giving myself an almost $2/hr raise!

I would like to move closer to work. I will keep my eye on Craigslist to see if I can sublet my apartment and find a new one closer to work.

Have you ever cut your commute time?

*not my actual wage