Spinning our Wheels

Spinning our Wheels is a commuting blog about the challenges of getting around Atlanta by car, bus, MARTA, bicycles and on foot written by transportation reporter David Wickert

Driving alone remains most popular type of commute

Solo driving remains the most popular way of getting to work for the vast majority of Americans.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 76.4 percent U.S. workers drove alone, down slightly from an all-time high of 76.6 percent in 2010. The percent of Americans who got to work by car is 85.8.

Carpooling has been a reverse trend. It peaked around 1980 with 19.7 percent of workers traveling that way. But today, only about 1 in 10 commuters are carpoolers.

The Census Bureau’s latest report on commuting, “Who Drives to Work? Commuting by Automobile in the United States: 2013,” was released on Thursday. It highlights numerous other differences in how people get to work and how that has changed since 1960.

Of particular note are commuting pattern changes among young, urban workers:

  • About three-quarters of those ages 16 to 24 commuted by automobile, compared to 80 percent of the oldest workers.
  • Workers between 25 and 29 years old were the least likely to have a vehicle.

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