Living locally can deliver great value
Commuting is boring, harmful to your health, and dangerous for your wallet.
I base these claims on personal experience.
I was a jobbing journo in London for three years, and commuted in from a village near Cambridge.
Here was my commute. Rise before dawn. Cycle 3km to Waterbeach village station. 9km train ride to Cambridge. Change for the 90km trip to King’s Cross Station. Tube and foot to office on Picadilly Circus.
The trip took anywhere from an hour-and-a-half to two-and-abit hours in the aftermath of the deadly 2002 Potter’s Bar train crash. It was life-sapping and costly. I used to bunk three nights a week in friends’ pads in London to cope, resulting in less sleep, more boozing, and more spending.
When Auckland became my home, I kissed a fond goodbye to mega-commuting.
The drive from Titirangi (an outlying Auckland suburb in a rainforest), to work was about 25 minutes.
But as the years passed, my commute time got longer as the roads got fuller.
Children arrived, and with them a diversion to daycare.
Suddenly the commute took the better part of an hour each way.
Rush, rush. Fill the tank. Pay the rego. Groan when its WOF time again.
We are building ever more properties on Auckland’s fringes. is a growing People are commuting in from Pokeno, Pukekohe, Millwater, Hamilton.
People have ‘‘driven till they qualify’’.
This is an American term capturing the idea people will commute from wherever houses finally become affordable.
Owning a home is so critical to our identity, we are willing to make big sacrifices for it.