The gruelling, six-hour commute of Beijing’s workers

China Daily Life

BEIJING, CHINA – OCTOBER 16: Chinese commuters crowd onto a subway car on the metro during rush hour on October 16, 2014 in Beijing, China. (Photo by Kevin Frayer/Getty Images)

Source: BBC

By Danny Vincent

On some days, Zhang Xia spends more time commuting to work than she does in the office.

The 39-year-old marketing manager lives in Yanjiao, a bustling city packed with residential high rises, found east of Beijing in northern China. She is one of hundreds of thousands of white-collar workers who spend on average six hours – and sometimes up to nine hours or more – travelling to and from Beijing to work each day.

The capital’s soaring property market is pricing thousands of young workers out of the city and into commuter towns like Yanjiao. According to a 2016 report by the Global Cities Business Alliance, Beijing is the world’s most expensive city for renters, with average prices 1.2 times higher than average salaries. Prices are also soaring for those looking to buy – in the twelve months to September last year, property prices rose by 28%.

Because owning a home in Beijing is not an option for most people, many live in on the outskirts in ‘sleeper’ cities – so named because office workers travel there just to sleep where property is more affordable.

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Categories: Asia, China, The Muslim Times

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