Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Zip Code Discrimination
December 14, 2010

The Green Commuter

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

In today’s ultra-competitive job market, job seekers are spending extra time making sure their resume is polished, perfect, and a great representation of who they are and what they could bring to a company. If this sounds like you, it is a good guess that you have spent hours considering the right action verbs and defining your core competencies; however, have you considered how a hiring manager regards your home address?

You’re probably thinking, “What does my address have to do with anything? I am a solid candidate with great experience; I bring loads of great things to the table.” You also bring some serious baggage, in the form of miles to and from the office.

Because of the high amount of job seekers who are actively searching today, hiring managers have become more picky on not only getting the most for their payroll dollars, but also the attractiveness of the zip code in which a potential employee lives. A long commute (usually over 1 hour & 15 minutes) throws up a red flag to the interviewer that says:

  • “Great, this person is qualified, but constantly going to be stuck in traffic and turning up to the office late. Company productivity is going to suffer because they have a lousy commute.”
  • “Hmm, commuting from Leesburg to Washington D.C. everyday? That’s an hour and a half in good traffic! I smell burnout in a couple months!”

Face it, driving back and forth from an office for long periods of time is exhausting, you know this and so does a potential interviewer. You can say that it doesn’t bother you, or that you have done it before and it’s no big deal, but an employer knows better. They realize a long commute provides an excuse for calling in sick on a day when you “just can’t deal with traffic” and that worker burnout is higher for employees who have to battle rush hour before they even start their day than for employees who live close to the office. As qualified as you may be, your home address might be disqualifying you from your dream job.

So what’s the solution? Pack up your bags and move? Not in this real estate market!

Don’t worry, selling your house is not required, not when you realize that you do have options. Because cities and metropolitan areas are more spread out than ever before, people are looking for solutions to their commuting nightmares. Commuter Swap provides an option for commuters in opposite geographic areas to “swap” their residences to create a “home away from home” atmosphere. This concept keeps you sane during the week and makes your boss appreciative of your punctuality. Commuter Swap is a creative way to make a potential employer focus less on your address and more on why you would be an asset to their company.

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The More You Drive, The Less You Thrive
September 27, 2010

10 Simple Solutions to Stress: How to Tame Tension And Start Enjoying Your Life

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

Everyone is familiar with the stresses of driving in rush hour. Drivers weaving in and out of traffic, people paying more attention to their cell phones or make-up than the road, and the constant stopping and going can be infuriating. Be it morning or night, a long commute to or from work is the last thing that anyone wants to deal with. Let alone the stress of the drive is actually dangerous to your health!

According to a recent article by Examiner.com, there is a correlation between the length of your commute and your overall health and well-being. The article cites recurring pain in the neck or back, and high cholesterol as symptoms of an extensive commute. Now we all know that a long commute is stressful, but does it really affect our health? According to this article, one in three people say yes, it does.

An extensive commute has also been linked to obesity. Examiner.com’s article cites that thirty percent of employees whose commute lasts longer than ninety minutes have a higher chance of being obese than those individuals who do not share in the commute time or frequency.

But what about how a challenging commute plays on your emotions? Stress is a strong emotion, and if the stress of heavy traffic can affect your physical health, can it affect your emotional health? Yes, it can. The article reports that employees who regularly commute over ninety minutes a day complain of being tired and suffer from higher rates of sadness and depression than those who do not have to travel so far to get to work.

If this article and these statistics give you reason to pause and consider your own commute and how you have been feeling lately, check out Commuter Swap and consider the options available for getting more out of life and cutting down on drive time and stress. After all, life is too short, who wants to spend it in a car? Improve your perspective while providing for better mental and physical health, a home swap with Commuter Swap just might be the answer for you.

source: examiner.com- http://www.examiner.com/gallup-polls-in-national/the-longer-your-commute-the-lower-your-wellbeing

Vacation or Staycation: Keeping a Perspective on Work/Life Balance
August 18, 2010

The Great American Staycation: How to Make a Vacation at Home Fun for the Whole Family (and Your Wallet!)

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

Dealing with the stress of working in today’s economy day in and day out is exhausting. The recession has left many companies shorthanded, and those who are employed often have to carry not only their workload, but also the workloads of nonexistent coworkers. With less people doing more work, employees are faced with extended work days and a greater need to go on vacation. Despite the high stress level and dire need to get away, many workers, however, are opting not to use all of their vacation time.

An article by CNN Living delves into the reasons why employees are forgoing their vacations and enduring the stress. Oftentimes, employees feel the strain of extra responsibility and do not want to appear lazy. Other employees shy away from the stress of scheduling vacation time in advance. By declining to take a vacation, some people may think that they will gain the reputation of being a hard worker, someone their boss can depend on and one that would never be thought of when a string of layoffs are considered. Furthermore, many employees, as much as they want to take vacation time, have a spouse

Coordinating a vacation can be hectic, but the idea of what a vacation is has been turned upside down by the “staycation,” which is growing in popularity. CNN’s article says staycations “require very little research and planning, are cost effective and are a great compromise for those with family obligations.” Instead of using vacation time to travel, many employees are choosing to stay at home during their paid time off. These employees are saving money and are bypassing all the stresses of travel. In addition to taking a staycation, CNN’s article recommends booking bargain, last-minute vacations to save money.

However you decide to spend your vacation time, make sure you do it as work/life balance is becoming increasingly important to the workers’ sanity during stressful economic times. Commuter Swap understands that people need time away from the hustle and bustle of the office, or at the very least more flexibility with schedules and their commute if they can’t get away from work. If you find yourself in a “PTO bind,” check out how Commuter Swap could at the very least reduce the time of your commute and put you closer to the office. Let’s face it, even a couple hours gained at the beginning and end of each day could feel like a vacation from the norm.

source: CNN – http://www.cnn.com/2010/LIVING/08/04/cb.reluctant.to.take.vacation/index.html

What’s your Driving Personality?
July 19, 2010

Professional Driving Techniques: The Essential Guide to Operating a Motor Vehicle with Confidence and Skill

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

How would you rate your driving habits? Are you a diligent commuter or a little too courageous behind the wheel. Like most drivers, our driving habits are largely dictated by our commute. As an illustration, check out these statistics from a survey conducted by TomTom in which the driving habits of seven major commuter cities were tabulated:

  • 61.3% of Americans travel five to 10 miles over the speed limit; High Score: Atlanta, 66.2%
  • 71.2% of Americans change their route depending on the time of day to reach their destination the fastest way possible; High Score: Los Angeles, 78.3%
  • 19.8% of Americans lean on their horns when someone cuts them off; High Score: Boston, 27.6%
  • 10.7% of Americans curse or gesture crudely when someone cuts them off; High Score: Atlanta, 14.4%
  • 21.6% of Americans slam on their brakes or slow down when being tailgated; High Score: Atlanta, 26.4%

Nationally, 58.1 percent of Americans surveyed have a daily commute that lasts 45 minutes to an hour. With so much time spent in the car, it comes as no surprise that some interesting, and in some cases, even embarrassing behaviors and occurrences have resulted.

So, stop spending most of your day in the car and dealing with obnoxious and annoying drivers (not to mention dangerous). Instead of living behind the wheel, start living more at Commuter Swap today. You’ll spend less time behind the wheel and more time enjoying activities that don’t involve embarrassing or obnoxious driving habits.

source: GPS and Car Tracking – http://gps-cartracking.com/tomtom-survey-reveals-interesting-facts-about-drivers

Summer Road Warriors
June 22, 2010

Summer in Connecticut: A Positively Connecticut Book

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

Summer is officially here and for the extreme commuter, you know what’s coming next…

1) Increased congestion to our highways and byways, as everyone hits the road for summer vacation.

2) Higher gas prices (of course).

First let’s tackle higher gas prices. Here are a few tips to ease the pain at the pump this summer…

1. Back Off Jack
Slow it down and stop using your brake as a foot petal on your bass drum.driving like a maniac will reduce your mileage by up to a third. Instead, change speed at sensible rates. You’ll save money if you do. And keep the driver in front of you from giving you the 1 finger salute.

2. Pump it Up
Properly inflated tires are not just more efficient — they’ll last longer, too. Improperly inflated tires will decrease your gas mileage by almost 4%.

3.”I Cant Drive 55″
You can and you should! Almost all cars efficiency decreases at anything over 60 mph.

4. Dont Wait for That Noise to Stop..It Wont
Take care of the little things and the big things will take care of themselves. Change oil regularly,maintain proper fluid levels, keep the engine clean, get the emissions tested, and stay up-to-date on tuneups.

Now, what to do about the added congestion from our traveling friends?!!!

You could hole up in the house until September or so, but the boss probably won’t be too happy with that decision.

Better yet, you could beat them at their own game… How about a vacation from traffic – A home exchange with a destination of a better quality of life?

List your home for exchange on Commuter Swap and swap it with one closer to your job. Get off the road and leave the congestion and higher gas prices to the summer road warriors.

source: Fast 12 Second Commute – http://fast12secondcommute.blogspot.com/2010/06/free-gas-savings-tips-for-summer-2010.html

Making the most out of the daily commute
June 8, 2010

The 25 Best Time Management Tools & Techniques: How to Get More Done Without Driving Yourself Crazy

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

Just because you’re stuck on a commuter train for 3 hours a day, doesn’t mean that you can’t be productive. Here are some tips to help you pass the time…

Time spent commuting on public transport can be used effectively by reading a newspaper, writing a to-do list or sorting through emails (sorry drivers, eyes ahead and hands on the wheel)….

1. Read a Local/National Paper – Catch up on business news
2. Create a To-Do List – Organize your day
3. Use a Blackberry or I-Phone – Sort through those emails

While time management activities are a great way to pass the time on the long journey to or from the workplace, wouldn’t it be better to actually spend less time commuting in the first place?

Check out Commuter Swap. List your home for exchange and swap it with one closer to your job site. Spend less time commuting and more time actually getting things done instead of planning to do them.

source: suite 101.com – http://personal-work-habits.suite101.com/article.cfm/how-to-make-commuting-time-more-effective

The worst commute in the world….
May 24, 2010

The Travel Book: A Journey Through Every Country in the World

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

How much time do you waste commuting to work? It’s probably a lot more than you think. And, unfortunately, you’re not alone, as misery definitely loves company when it comes to the nightmare commute, which transcends both borders and cultures.

So, without further delay, here are the world’s worst commute times…

Average time in minutes of a trip to and from work:

* Barcelona: 48.4
* Dallas: 53.0
* Milan: 53.4
* Seattle: 55.5
* Boston: 55.8
* Los Angeles: 56.1
* San Francisco: 57.4
* Chicago: 61.4
* Berlin: 63.2
* Halifax: 65.0
* Sydney: 66.0
* Madrid: 66.1
* Calgary: 67.0
* Vancouver: 67.0
* New York: 68.1
* Stockholm: 70.0
* London: 74.0
* Montreal: 76.0
* Toronto: 80.0

There are many reasons why commute times continue to rise across the globe, but there aren’t many options to alleviate the long commute, which makes commuting to work an almost no-win situation.

So, how much is your time worth? If you’re tired of wasting most of it commuting to work and frustrated by the lack of alternative commuting options, then sign up for Commuter Swap today and swap your home with another homeowner closer to your workplace.

Stop wasting your time sitting in traffic and start reaping the benefits of increased leisure time!

source: the star.com – http://www.thestar.com/yourcitymycity/article/787400–toronto-commuting-times-worst-of-19-major-cities-study-saysl

Lose the commute or the job?
May 13, 2010

The Pathfinder: How to Choose or Change Your Career for a Lifetime of Satisfaction and Success

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

In a recent poll, a majority of working professionals stated that they would consider finding a job closer to their home due to rising gas prices, even if it means leaving their current job:

What alternatives are you considering as a result of high gas prices affecting your commute to work?

• 79 percent – Find a job closer to home
• 13 percent – Telecommuting from home
• 6 percent – Public transportation or walking
• 2 percent – Carpooling with colleagues

If you’re a business owner or hiring manager, those numbers should alarm you. Can you afford to lose your most talented assets because of limited transportation options? It’s time for a fresh approach to commuting. It’s time to tell your employees to stop complaining and start swapping with Commuter Swap! Commuter Swap offers commuters the ability to swap their home so they can live closer to their workplace, alleviating the long commute and mass panic from businesses across the globe.

source: beyond.com – http://us.generation-nt.com/beyond-com-reports-79-percent-professionals-are-looking-job-press-945431.html

To commute or not….
May 4, 2010

Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

In a recent New Yorker blog post it was stated that “Roughly one out of every six American workers commutes more than forty-five minutes, each way. People travel between counties the way they used to travel between neighborhoods. The number of commuters who travel ninety minutes or more each way—known to the Census Bureau as “extreme commuters”—has reached 3.5 million, almost double the number in 1990. They’re the fastest-growing category, the vanguard in a land of stagnant wages, low interest rates, and ever-radiating sprawl. They’re the talk-radio listeners, billboard glimpsers, gas guzzlers, and swing voters, and they don’t—can’t—watch the evening news. Some take on long commutes by choice, and some out of necessity, although the difference between one and the other can be hard to discern. A commute is a distillation of a life’s main ingredients, a product of fundamental values and choices. And time is the vital currency: how much of it you spend—and how you spend it—reveals a great deal about how much you think it is worth… People may endure miserable commutes out of an inability to weigh their general well-being against quantifiable material gains”

Whether or not we choose to endure miserable commutes is inconsequential. The bottom line is that too many people spend too much of their precious time commuting to work. At Commuter Swap, we have a better alternative. Instead of breathing in exhaust fumes, eating meals on the go and severely limiting your free time, why not swap your home with another homeowner closer to your workplace? Save time, money and the environment, but most importantly your sanity.

source: The New Yorker – http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2007/04/16/070416fa_fact_paumgarten#ixzz0mtqrYdDY

How to Survive a Stressful Commute
April 27, 2010

Stress Reduction for Busy People: Finding Peace in an Anxious World

www.commuterswap.net – Work Closer. Live More.

“Let’s face it one of the most stressful activities we do can be driving. Rather it’s the daily commute to work, drop-off and pick-up at our children’s schools or trying to maneuver the mall parking lot on a Saturday. We spend so much time in our cars it is no wonder driving stress is such a big deal.

  • Gum, don’t leave home with out it. Sugar free or not, it does not matter, it is act of chewing that calms the brain. Mint flavored gum especially peppermint seems to be very popular for stress relief.
  • Travel with some drinking water. Drinking water has been known to have a calming effect on the nerves. Besides can you drink too much water?
  • Have calming scents in the car. Mint, lavender and vanilla are all calming and soothing smells. Find a scent your really love, that calms your nerves and keep it fresh in your car with a plug in or air freshener.
  • Happy thoughts. When things start to get stressful during your drive, think of something simple and happy. A happy thought is bound to bring a smile to your face and help counteract the stressful things you have no control over going on outside your car.
  • Don’t forget the IPod or tape or CD of your favorite calming music. They say music soothes the soul, so don’t be afraid to blast your favorite tunes no matter how corny your kids say you are. It you feel like singing along, go ahead, who cares what they folks in the cars around you think. Just remember to keep your eyes on the road as you belt out your favorite ABBA song.”

While stress reducing tips can help, wouldn’t it be better to alleviate the problem all together? If long commutes to work are affecting your quality of life, then consider a home exchange at Commuter Swap. Swap you home with another commuter whose commute is as miserable as yours. Live closer to your job and find permanent stress relief for the daily commute and a better quality of life.

source: associatedcontent – http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/2846660/10_tips_to_surviving_a_stressful_driving.html?cat=5