Determinants of extreme commuting. Evidence from Brussels, Geneva and Lyon
Daily travel time has increased in Europe during the last decade. Some commuters show unusual commuting behaviours, so-called extreme commuting, which is defined as spending more than 100 min commuting a day. This paper aims to explain these commuting patterns from the point of view of the extreme commuters themselves. Based on a qualitative survey conducted in three European regions - Lyon, Brussels and Geneva - among individuals that spend at least two hours a day commuting, this study shows that extreme commuting is determined by complex interplay between the individual's working and private life and issues related to travel. Among our sample, the choice of public transportation modes assisted long-duration commuting. Our results also highlight the paradox that rapid transportation networks are used intensively to allow people to remain rooted — both residentially and socially.