THE BLOG

UK Transport Providers: Is This the Final Strike?

19/01/2015 11:38 GMT | Updated 18/03/2015 09:59 GMT

Tube strikes, bus strikes, closed stations and unexpected diversions. Rousing yourself from the warm, loving hug of a duvet to the cold march of the Monday to Friday working life. Then to top it off, we're all skint. Could January get any bleaker?

Whether it's due to freezing, wet mornings that drain away motivation or just a well needed rest from the winter chill, it seems almost half of us are unhappy with our way to work, according to a recent survey by air conditioning and heating company Andrews Sykes.

Of the 2,000 people asked, only 15% believe UK transport providers, meaning buses, trains, tubes and taxis, do a decent job; anyone who's been on the Northern Line pre-9am will vouch alongside the 45% of folk who complain overcrowding is a serious problem with public transport during winter.

Wherever you live, it could be the crammed trams of inner-city Sheffield or the stuffy tubes of Tower Hill, commuting is an aggravating experience, whatever the season. Even more so when you're uncomfortable or ill. Hence why people are worried about catching more than just the tube on their journey to work, with 40% of people rightfully voicing concerns over viruses and catching colds from the forced intimacy of poorly ventilated, over-crowded carriages. Nothing like a warm, unsuspecting sneeze to the cheek to wake you up in the morning, eh?

On the other end of the scale, 32% are fed up of delays to their journey to work - a figure that I imagine has grown massively in light of the recent bus strikes and chronic holdups on UK motorways. We won't even mention the M25, which is more than likely to have played a factor in the 47% of people pointing the finger at adverse winter weather conditions making them late for work. While I can offer praise for bus, taxi or car drivers taking icy roads slow and steady, I can only offer a sarcastic round of applause for the UK's train and tube services, who can't exactly feign the unpredictability of endless rain or a sprinkle of snow as an excuse, year after year.

Outside of the car, only 34% of people are comfortable with their commute temperature. We all know that horrible feeling of freezing at a bus stop only to roast under layers after stepping onto a packed bus. At least when you're going from cold streets to hot shops, you've got the room to take off your coat or scarf without giving someone an elbow to the eye.

As opposed to pulling on a pair of radiator pants after sprinting to the shower, it seems people have taken heed from their student days by remaining in the loving arms of your bed along with 47% of people who have skived and pulled a sickie. It seems once popped people cannot stop, as 44% of people who have taken a day off work with fictional flu have taken around 3-5 days off work this winter.

Be it real flu, severe distaste of the unavoidable, an overcrowded commute or simply just a well-needed day off; if this amount of people are clearly unhappy with the services provided by UK transport companies (who are constantly on strike themselves) then surely something needs to be done? Before it all goes off the rails.