Best ways to make daily city commutes in traffic more productive

I have learnt ways to extract the best fuel efficiency out of my car and the best I could get is 26 km/l from my i20 petrol.

BHPian izzikio_rage recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

Hey everyone, with the return-to-office craziness already starting it seems like we'll all be commuting to the office daily again (if not already). Was trying to figure out ways to make the daily commute a bit more productive and wanted more suggestions and advice. What I currently have is.

  1. Pocket app: Have been using this to save articles that I come across but want to read later. It can also play the articles back as audio. Have to manually play this from the phone since no Android Auto integration, but a good way to get my reading list done
  2. Podcasts: Very new to this and still trying to figure out some good set to listen to, but people tell me it's the best way to learn something on the move
  3. Audiobooks: On YouTube or Audible, but again something that I've not been able to get used to enjoying yet

Let me know your suggestions, apps, things to do whatever you've used to make that dead commute time a bit better

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

If roads are empty:

  • When my office was at Churchgate and I had a daily one-way commute of 13 km, I used to leave at 0755 in my City / Civic and go high-revving on empty roads. It was incredibly therapeutic. Enjoy the drive, enjoy your car, enjoy the music.

If roads are full of traffic:

  • I usually take an Uber / Ola sedan, plonk myself in the front seat and work on my laptop or calls.
  • If driving yourself, I guess podcasts & audiobooks. I am a big fan of long-form content (I read for an hour every day with my meals) and many big websites now have a "listen to this article" option.

But really, whenever there is heavy traffic on my route, I just call for an app-based taxi and work.

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

Excellent thread on this one, especially since I reside in Bangalore, and I spend close to 1-2 hours every day in traffic depending on my luck.

Key stuff for me to do while driving:

  1. Talking to family and friends on the phone - keeps my irritation level down and under control given the chaotic traffic that I see every day. Also good to connect with folks when it's difficult to find time given the workload at the office and family commitments. (Please note that I use handsfree connection, so it's completely safe)
  2. Listen to podcasts on YT/Google Podcasts and audiobooks on Audible: There are pretty amazing podcasts on Google podcasts and creators on YT who come up with wonderful content on everything from politics, movies, science and automobiles. Audible has wonderful narrations of books by renowned folks (e.g. Sherlock Holmes by Stephen Fry, that are wonderful to listen to. Was also hooked to Kumar Vishwas's channel sometime back. Plug in and enjoy.
  3. Deliberate on life priorities and solutions to problems faced: not kidding, driving even in congested traffic areas helps me focus and I've figured out decent approaches to stuff that I faced at work/personal front.
  4. If travelling with a company (family/friends) - just chit-chat and catch up on things that we haven't talked about in a while. It's so much fun to travel with mom/wife and catch up on family matters that I keep missing out regularly because of professional commitments.

What I don't do: listen to songs (bored of them, and songs usually do not help me drive better, but again that's a personal preference).

Doing all this, while with enough focus on traffic conditions has made my commute much easier, and also helped me keep away drowsiness and keep myself calm despite provocations from morons on the road. Will look forward to your responses on this thread to see if I can add anything to my list.

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

Discovering alternate routes with less traffic is an interesting activity. Especially routes that bypass the chokepoints, even if it takes a longer time.

The problem with getting across chokepoints is that it can either take 10 minutes or 40 minutes depending on your luck. But if an alternate route takes 20 minutes at any time of day (because of free-flowing or less traffic), this route might be better. Time consistency of commute is highly underrated. If you know beforehand that the commute will take exactly 1 hour come what may, it will be less stressful than a commute that takes 45 mins to 1.5 hours, depending on the traffic.

You have to have an open mind about going through residential areas if necessary, and not always the "main roads". However, it is best to avoid narrow roads, because that introduces an element of uncertainty into the route (badly parked cars or two-wheelers)

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

I have to go to the office twice a week and the rest of the days can be WFH. So I have taken this opportunity to better understand my daily drive. I have learnt ways to extract the best mileage out of my car and the best I could get is 26 though I don't have that picture, but for reference, I am attaching one on my recent trip to Vikarabad near Hyderabad. And this is my 1.2 petrol i20.

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