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Americans spend a lot of time commuting to and from work. According to data sourced from the United States Census Bureau, the average commute last year, one way, was 27.6 minutes. So, we can assume that means a daily total of 55.2 minutes spent traveling to and from one’s job each day. Let’s assume the average worker has two weeks off each year, which with a five-day workweek would mean 260 days.
Then let’s throw in another five days for holidays and sick time and such, and we’ll settle on 255 days per year likely spent commuting. Multiply those 55.2 minutes with those 255 days, and the answer is… depressing. OK, it’s 14,131.2 minutes, or 235 hours each year commuting. That’s just under ten entire days—spent traveling to and from work.
Long story short, we spend a long time in our cars, on trains, on busses, or however else we are getting ourselves to our workplaces. Thus, any gift that makes a person’s commute that much more enjoyable—or less unpleasant, anyway—is a gift that will be truly appreciated. Scroll through below to check out the best thoughtful gifts for commuters.
A Purist Mover 18-Ounce Water Bottle
Sure, it’s a water bottle first, but it’s also a coffee, tea mug, or even a smoothie container. Or juice cup. Or whatever you want, because thanks to the glass-lined interior of Purist products, no traces of the taste of previous liquids remain in the bottles after a washing, so you can use one again and again for all sorts of different beverages. They keep cold liquids chilled and hot liquids warm, and because all Purist bottles work with several different types of top, from a screw-open lid to a straw-style flip top to a simple lid, they are perfect for every type of commute, even including the cyclist.
Driving at night can be tiring and dangerous as the glare from streetlamps and oncoming headlights cause you to squint and avert your eyes. This leads to increased strain and decreased visual acuity. With a pair of purpose-built driving glasses, the glare from these lights is reduced, and your vision is sharpened, making night driving safer and more pleasant.
Universal Phone Mount for Car
Whether it’s used as a GPS system, as a podcast or music streaming device, or for texting or checking email while driving (we all know we all do it sometimes!), a phone is safer and more convenient to use when it is mounted right at hand and in easy view. This phone mount can be affixed to a dashboard or windshield, and it accommodates just about every type of smartphone.
Vibes High-Fidelity Earplugs Invisible Ear Plugs
While obviously not suitable for the driver, if someone’s commute involves the noisy bustle of the train, subway, or bus—not to mention the clamor of walking down a big city street—then a pair of Vibes earplugs are a great way to reduce the din. These subtle, comfortable earplugs still allow in sound, and rather clearly at that (thus the “high-fidelity” of it all), they simply cut the decibel level down.
Goal Zero Flip 24 Portable Phone Charger
A dead phone does not a good commute make. With this compact external power bank from Goal Zero, though, dead phones are quite unlikely. This 4.6-ounce battery unit tucks into any glovebox, purse, or backpack, and can fully power up just about any smartphone twice per charge.
Whether tucked into a piece of luggage during travel or safely stored in your everyday bag or briefcase, an Apple AirTag means that you can always keep track of your things even if you accidentally leave said things in the Uber or on the train or of the airline accidentally sends your bag to Jakarta instead of JFK.
Cotopaxi Allpa 28L Backpack
Suitable for cycling or use during the longest walks, a great choice as a carry-on for flights, and perfect for use in crowded city conditions thanks to its durable construction and several safety features, the Allpa backpack from Cotopaxi just makes it that much easier to get your things from here to there, be those things a laptop and tablet, books or files, snacks, spare clothes, and anything else you fit into this craftily designed multi-compartment backpack.
Brooks Running Ghost 15 Shoes
Walking to work in your heels or loafers or whatnot is a great way to injure your feet. And in fact, even a long drive in tighter, less supportive, and flexible shoes isn’t ideal. Treat your feet well on your commute, and your whole body will feel better for the rest of the day, and it’s hard to treat feet better than with the latest lightweight, cushioned, supportive running shoes from Brooks. The Ghost 15 runners also just happen to treat the planet well, being made largely with recycled materials.
Vantrue N2 Pro Front and Inside Dash Cam
Down from $200
Easy to install and easy to use, this top-rated dash camera from Vantrue adds a layer of safety and accountability that we all deserve these days. No more worries about being blamed for a fender-bender (or worse) that wasn’t your fault, not when you have video evidence of exactly what went down.
This is quite likely the best collapsible umbrella you will ever own. Weatherman umbrellas are rated to hold their shape in winds as strong as 55 miles per hour, so no more flipped-out canopies to enrage you, and the fabric of the umbrella is highly water-repellent, so rain and even snowflakes simply slide right off it.
Death Wish Coffee Extra Caffeine
Really, the name of this coffee brand is pretty ironic, as what’s more life-affirming than a great cup of coffee? And that’s very much what one gets with Death Wish coffee: a great-tasting cuppa that’s also jam-packed with caffeine (it’s as much as twice as potent as the coffee from other companies), so getting through that commute and into the day will be easier than ever.
The post The Best Gifts for People With Long Commutes Who Basically Live in Their Cars appeared first on The Daily Beast.