Traffic is the No. 1 cause of stress

What’s the number 1 cause of stress? Traffic, according to a recent research report.

The recent report was conducted in Montreal and involved 3 study groups. Walkers, drivers and those taking transit. The main goal of the report was to measure the various real and perceived stressors felt by the approx. 4000 people in the study group.

The conclusion. Drivers had the highest average stress levels, mostly due to “trip unpredictability”

Those driving, ironically feel they have less control over their commute than those using other modes of transportation. The result of this is a lengthier period of stress on the system for drivers.

Drivers on average also budget approximately 30 minutes of extra travel time into their trips. Again, causing more time to be concerned with the overall trip experience. Drivers also showed a much stronger willingness to use modular modes of transportation for their trip, such as walking or transit than either of the other groups did about driving.

So what did the researchers conclude?

A modular transportation approach, much like the radius parking strategy put forth by Canadian parking start-up Rover Parking, are not only environmentally and socially more sustainable, they are by far a less stressful way to travel.

One line of the report clearly stood out as it relates to drivers. Driving is clearly be the most stressful commute mode, but it often remains the most popular simply out of habit and/or necessity.

The key here for people that experience stress from driving is to change their behavior. If you need to drive, drive less, park earlier and break up the trip. This will not only cause the level of stress to go down during the trip, and stress associated with pre-trip planning will also dramatically decrease.

When there’s awareness to a better alternative, however, behavior will change. The hardest part is making the masses aware of the new options like park and walk, bike, ride share or transit being easily and readily available.