SWS survey: Covid made commuting to work ‘very much harder’


Commuting to work became “very much harder” for workers during the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic, according to a latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey released on Friday.


The SWS survey showed 42 percent of Filipinos who are not doing home-based work said that going to work is now more difficult because of Covid-19 restrictions. Also, 19 percent said going to work is somewhat harder due to the health crisis; slightly harder now (11 percent); and 28 percent said it is still the same as before.


Also, around 44 percent said they had to walk to their workplaces daily.


“The national Social Weather Survey of November 21-25, 2020, found 42 percent of non-home-based working Filipinos saying going to work is very much harder than before the Covid-19 pandemic. Forty-four percent of them walk to work,” SWS said in its report.


“Non-home-based workers were also asked, ‘What mode of transportation do you use most commonly to travel to your work?’ […] To this, 44 percent volunteered to answer that they walk to work, making it the most common means of getting to work,” it added.


After walking, the SWS survey showed that workers use their own motorcycles (24 percent); rode tricycles (14 percent), jeepneys/multi-cabs (8 percent), bicycles (5 percent), bus (3 percent), private car (3 percent), and motorboat/banca (1 percent).


“Obtaining marginal scores are taxi/transport network vehicle service or TNVS (e.g., Grab) (0.4 percent), pedicab (0.4 percent), train (0.2 percent), carabao (0.2 percent), truck (0.2 percent, e-bike (0.2 percent), and airplane (0.1 percent),” SWS noted.


SWS said the survey was conducted from November 21 to 25, 2020, when quarantine restrictions were more relaxed than in the recent weeks.


“By September 2020, although community quarantines relaxed to either GCQ (general community quarantine) or modified GCQ (MGCQ), granular lockdowns, strict local borders, and limited public transportation remained. It was during these conditions when SWS conducted its November 21-25, 2020 national survey,” SWS noted.


However, SWS said that it appears commuting is perceived to be the hardest in Mindanao, followed by Visayas, Metro Manila, and then the rest of Luzon.


“The percentage of those who considered going to work to be very much harder compared to pre-pandemic is highest in Mindanao (60 percent), followed by the Visayas (48 percent), Metro Manila (36 percent), and Balance Luzon (27 percent),” SWS said.


“The difficulty of going to work did not vary between urban and rural areas,” it added.

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