Shock loser due to working from home
Aussies no longer commuting are saving big bucks working from home, but one particular transport user isn't doing nearly as well.
New research from comparison website Finder has shown people to drive to work are saving the least during the lockdown.
Finder analysed data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and the usage of the NSW public transport Opal Card along with a survey of more than 1000 Aussies.
The research found that those who travelled via ferry were the best off, saving on average $154 a month.
This was followed by those who used the train ($108), bus ($90) and tram ($75).
Commuters who are now working from home instead of driving to work are only saving $40 a month. This includes costs such as fuel and tolls but not parking.
Drivers are substantially worse off once insurance and depreciation on an unused asset are taken into account.
Depreciation and insurance - which includes compulsory green slip and comprehensive - can run into the thousands every year on a vehicle.
Every year the Royal Automobile Club of Queensland (RACQ) releases its list of the most affordable cars to own and run.
According to the most recent RACQ survey in 2019 the cheapest car to own and run was the Mitsubishi Mirage. Depreciation on the pint-sized hatch cost owners more than $34 a week. At the other end of the scale, those with a BMW X5 SUV parked in the garage during lockdown are losing $225 a week in depreciation.
If flexible working conditions continue once Covid-19 lockdown restrictions ease this could lead to people owning less expensive machines as they drive less.
Graham Cooke, insights manager at Finder, said this could have a big impact on workers living in commuter towns such as Wollongong or on the Central Coast just outside Sydney.
"While transport costs are essential for the most part, they can end up being surprisingly expensive, especially for those who have to travel long distances to get to work," said Cooke.
But Australians will have to wait and see if this way of working continues.
"Once social distancing restrictions are over, it will be interesting to see whether workplaces offer more flexibility around working from home," he said
"Not only can remote working help Aussies to save on transport costs, it may also help to free up road congestion and reduce pollution levels."
Car sharing service Car Next Door has started to experience an increase in bookings since they initially fell off at the start of pandemic as Aussies avoid using public transport.
Car Next Door says a recent study showed that 75 per cent of people have stopped using public transport because they were concerned about catching the coronavirus.