New research commissioned by Real Insurance found the rising cost of living has impacted 71% of Australians commuting costs over the past year.

Out of the 5,001 respondents, 48% noted the rising fuel and transport costs have resulted in added financial pressure for their household.

On average, the cost of commuting per year is $4,003. Collectively, this equates to $42.3 billion spent annually across the country.

While Sydney is the most expensive capital city to commute to work ($22 per day), Brisbanites were most likely to describe their trip as difficult (29%). 

The difference between the most expensive commute (Sydney) and the mid-tier commute (Brisbane) is $771 annually.

Senior Lecturer in Transport Planning Dr John Stone said despite the disadvantages of the long and expensive commute, Australians are still using public transport.

“This is due to several factors including changes in environmental consciousness, demographic shifts with more people living closer to CBD jobs, and improvements in the quality of public transport and safer bike routes,” Mr Stone said.

When deciding where to live, six in 10 respondents said commuting time and cost were the biggest deciding factors. 

Before moving to a new house or changing jobs, the maximum price people are willing to spend per week on commuting to work is $80. 

Given the average daily commuting cost is $20, this works out to be $20 more than what Aussies are willing to pay on a five-day work week.

Which state has the highest commuting cost?

According to the research, 83% of commuters agree the cost of commuting has never been as expensive as it is now.

Below is the state-by-state breakdown for average daily and annual commute cost:

State Daily cost Annual cost
NSW $22 $4,477
ACT $21 $4,416
VIC $20 $3,902
WA $19 $3,905
QLD $18 $3,706
SA $18 $3,469
TAS $17 $3,835
NT $11 $2,440


Need somewhere to store cash and earn interest? The table below features savings accounts with some of the highest interest rates on the market.

Update resultsUpdate
BankSavings AccountBase Interest Rate Max Interest Rate Total Interest Earned Introductory Term Minimum Amount Maximum Amount Minimum Monthly Deposit Minimum Opening Deposit ATM Access Joint Application TagsFeaturesLinkCompare
4.40% p.a.
5.75% p.a.
Intro rate for 4 months
then 4.40% p.a.
4 months
  • Bonus rate for the first 4 months from account opening
  • No account keeping fees
  • No minimum balance
1.20% p.a.
Bonus rate of 4.20%
Conditions apply.
5.40% p.a.
  • Earn up to 5.40% pa by depositing $1,000 in the previous month
  • No account fees
  • Easy access to your money
4.75% p.a.
5.35% p.a.
Intro rate for 4 months
then 4.75% p.a.
4 months
  • A high-interest online savings account with no monthly fees, easy withdrawals and award-winning digital banking
  • No withdrawal notice periods or interest rate penalties
  • Save up to 10% on eGift cards at over 50 retailers with Macquarie Marketplace
Bonus rate of 5.50%
Conditions apply.
5.50% p.a.
Featured *Rate varies on savings amount
  • Deposit $500 per month to get bonus interest
  • No balance growth needed or card transactions necessary.
  • Tiered bonus rates apply. Earn our best rate on your first $100k. (TMDs at
  • 5.50% p.a. available on total savings up to $100K.
  • 5.00% p.a. applies to savings between $100K-250K.
Important Information and Comparison Rate Warning

All products with a link to a product provider’s website have a commercial marketing relationship between us and these providers. These products may appear prominently and first within the search tables regardless of their attributes and may include products marked as promoted, featured or sponsored. The link to a product provider’s website will allow you to get more information or apply for the product. By de-selecting “Show online partners only” additional non-commercialised products may be displayed and re-sorted at the top of the table. For more information on how we’ve selected these “Sponsored”, “Featured” and “Promoted” products, the products we compare, how we make money, and other important information about our service, please click here. Rates correct as of . View disclaimer.

Image by Mitchell Johnson via Unsplash