You've been there — sitting in a line of cars, brake lights as far as you can see. Nobody's moving. At least you have a podcast to listen to.
TomTom, an international navigation company, gathered traffic data 24 hours a day, every day, from cities across the country. They compared all of those data points with travel times during free-flow traffic conditions. The result: A list of some very, very congested cities.
Where does your city rank in terms of extra time getting where you're going? Here's what the number say...
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50. Columbus, Ohio
Around 79% of commuters in Columbus drive to work alone, according to census estimates.
Here, cars line up at Ohio State University as students move into their dormitories for a new school year.
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49. Minneapolis, Minnesota
The frequently snowy conditions in the Twin Cities only make bad traffic worse.
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48. Hartford, Connecticut
According to a 2020 WalletHub study, Connecticut ranks — at No. 40 — as one of the worst states in America for car travel.
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In 2017, drivers in Denver spent an average of 61 hours per year sitting in traffic. That's 2.5 days lost for each commuter.
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21. Tampa, Florida
If you've ever been sitting on County Line Road between Dale Mabry Highway and U.S. 41, wondering if it would be faster to get out of your car and walk, you won't be surprised by Tampa's spot on this list.
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20. Houston, Texas
In 2017, Houston driver spent an average of a whopping 75 hours sitting in traffic.
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19. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
The interchange between Interstates 76 and 676 ranked as one of the 40 most congested roadways in the country, according to the American Transportation Research Institute.
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18. Sacramento, California
In 2017, Sacramento drivers spent an average of $1,118 extra on gas because of time spent idling in traffic.
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12. San Diego, California
Compared with other cities in Southern California, San Diego's traffic might seem like a free-flowing dream. But in the evening rush — from 3 p.m. to around 6 p.m. — trips take around 60% more time than they would in free-flowing conditions.
What's the worst time to be on the road in San Diego? Thursday at 5 p.m.
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11. Baton Rouge, Louisiana
The population of Baton Rouge is around 230,000 people. The official seating capacity of Louisiana State University's Tiger Stadium, located in the city, is 102,321 — approaching half the population.
With so many people pouring into the area, drivers in Baton Rouge see Saturday football traffic that rivals the crippling Thursday evening rush. The University often issues traffic and parking reminders before big games.
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10. Austin, Texas
The annual number of hours spent in traffic in Austin increased by 20% from 2012 to 2017. During that same period, the city's population grew by more than 11%.
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9. Honolulu, Hawaii
Leaving work before 4 p.m. on Thursdays could save you up to 4 hours in traffic per year, assuming a 30 minute commute, according to TomTom.
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8. Chicago, Illinois
A 2019 study ranked the corridor around the I-90 and I-94 interchange as the sixth-most congested in the nation. The average speed during peak hours in this area is 16.1 miles per hour.
In January 2020, Ebay, the tech giant headquartered in San Jose, discontinued a shuttle service that drove workers around the San Francisco Bay Area. The reason? Not enough people were taking advantage.