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140 km daily commute to work: Improving the safety & comfort of my i20

I drive between Ghaziabad to Meerut, consisting of highways, city roads & a small section of single-lane road as well.

BHPian NG_EV recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

Due to a recent job change, my daily commute has increased to 140 km (round trip). At this point in time, relocating to my new place of work is not feasible as the new job is not permanent. However, I still see myself driving the route for at least 6 months. I request the members to suggest the things that I should do to make the trip safer and more comfortable.

Car: i20 Active SX (Petrol)

Route: Ghaziabad to Meerut [Half Highway, part city (under construction for RRTS and routine city traffic), and a few km of single lane road (goes through fields)].

Concerns: Weather (Monsoons and winter fog), routine Indian bad driving

I have already done the following:

  • Dashcam Installation - Front and Back
  • TPMS installed
  • All 4 tyres changed over the last 1 year
  • Jumper cables purchased
  • Service is done regularly as per the schedule
  • Wiper blades are new
  • The playlist for driving is set every day before the drive
  • The driving speed is around 70 Km/h in the left-most lane

I also have two parking options at my workplace, please help me decide the better one.

One is under the sun with no shade:

  • Advantage: No risk of rats, squirrels.
  • Disadvantage: Cabin gets too hot and takes time to cool down

The second option is under a tree:

  • Advantage: Cool cabin, paint is protected
  • Disadvantage: Spotted many squirrels, don't know if they damage cars like rats, and if the rat repellent coating would be helpful.

Planned additions:

  • Rat repellent, underbody and silencer coat from 3M
  • Purchase Tow cable - please suggest a good one
  • HIDs (Unsure)

Please help me in deciding what else is to be done in order to improve the drive and in deciding the parking spot. Thanks.

P.S: EV purchase is not an option right now as I am not willing to go for Nexon, Tigor or ZS EV. I am waiting for an EV built on a dedicated platform.

Here's what GTO had to say on the matter:

140 km is a lot of driving on a daily basis. My suggestion = don't waste time. Just as an example, you could use this time to listen to podcasts. For inspiration, or learning / spiritual / business. Anything.

Whenever I have a long commute during the day which I know will not be enjoyable, I call for an Uber and work from the front passenger seat (laptop or work calls). But I don't think that's an option for you. Unless you carpool with someone.

You should seriously check if there are other people doing the same commute, whether to your office or otherwise. Carpool. You could get a lot more work done in that time and hence, have more free time in the evenings or weekends.

Here's what BHPian jkrishnakj had to say on the matter:

I was doing 98 km a day, for almost 2 years till the pandemic struck us. I didn’t do anything out of the ordinary.

That said, I always had a small box of snacks/fruits and one water bottle in the car all the time (replenished every day)

There is only so much music you would want to listen to. I used to listen to podcasts or listening to comedy shows. Some days, I used to be talking to family/relatives over Bluetooth (I know, it’s not legal).

The other thing that worked for me is that I commuted from 10.30 am onwards to the office and return was never before 9.30 pm. That way, I used to average 55-70 minutes of commute times.

Here's what BHPian Dry Ice had to say on the matter:

As many have commented before me, you are worried about the wrong “machine” here. Think of what this long commute will do to your health. A battered car is easy to replace, but not your health or well being.

Look for carpooling options even if it means you drive some distance within the city to reach each other’s place. Around 4 years back, I had a minimal commute (in terms of distance) of ~12kms. But, I still made it a point to find people I could carpool with so that I don’t have to drive every day. I found 2 willing colleagues soon enough who were also fed up with driving every day. We spent about 15 mins more picking each other up every day, but, it was fine since overall everyone's driving time had reduced by over 60%.

Some days, I also used app-based buses (Ola used to run buses at that time and there was another app called Shuttl IIRC). This ensured on-time journeys and no unnecessary haggles with the cab drivers. See if this can be an option for your route.

I would reiterate, don’t overthink about your car. Most modern cars with reasonable maintenance records will be fine.

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

 
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