Examining the Relationship Between Commuting and it’s Impact on Overall Life Satisfaction

  • Lesley Fordham
  • Dea van Lierop
  • Ahmed El-Geneidy
Part of the Applying Quality of Life Research book series (BEPR)


Commuting to work and school can be viewed as an unpleasant and necessary task. However, some people enjoy their commutes and be satisfied with it. Trip satisfaction can have a positive impact on overall life satisfaction of individual. The purpose of this study is to analyze the relationship between individuals’ satisfaction with their commuting trips and its impact on overall life satisfaction. This study is based on the results of the 2015/2016 McGill Commuter Survey, a university-wide travel survey in which students, staff and faculty described their commuting experiences to McGill University, located in Montreal, Canada. Using a Factor-Cluster analysis, the study reveals that there is a relationship between trip satisfaction and the impact of commuting on overall life satisfaction. One result of the study shows that cyclists and pedestrians who have the highest overall trip satisfaction, report that their life satisfaction is most impacted by their commute, and have the highest overall life satisfaction. Also, for all mode users, one or two clusters exhibit lower trip satisfaction, report that satisfaction with their commute does not greatly influence their life satisfaction, and claim having access to and using fewer modes relative to other users of the same mode. These results, in addition to the results that active mode users have high life and trip satisfaction, suggest that building well-connected multi-modal networks that incorporate active transportation can improve the travel experience of all commuters and impact their overall life satisfaction.


Trip satisfaction Life satisfaction Cycling Walking Public transport Driving 



The authors would like to thank the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) for their financial support. We would also like to acknowledge Kathleen Ng and Brian Karasick from the McGill Office of Sustainability for their assistance with the various phases of this project, Prof. Kevin Manaugh and Charis Loong from McGill University for their help in designing the survey and Daniel Schwartz from IT Customer Services for his support in developing the online survey and managing the distribution of the survey to the McGill community.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lesley Fordham
    • 1
  • Dea van Lierop
    • 1
  • Ahmed El-Geneidy
    • 1
  1. 1.McGill UniversityMontrealCanada

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