SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — About 40% of workers in South Dakota commute at least 10 miles to work and with gas prices about $1.50 higher than last year, the work trip is more costly.
The commuter numbers are from the South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation. Those are the latest numbers and they’re based on the 2019 data.
Although the bulk of workers employed in the state travel less than 10 miles to work, about 58,000 travel at least 10 miles. Another 32,754 at least a 25-mile commute and 64,010 have more than a 50-mile commute.
How much more are commuters paying for that trip to work these days?
A year ago, the average pump price of regular gas in South Dakota was $2.903 a gallon, according to the AAA. This week, the average price per gallon is $4.369.
According to the South Dakota Department of Revenue, the state has more trucks, SUVs and vans registered than any other vehicle. That means there is a good chance a commuter may be driving one of those 741,128 type vehicles registered in the state in 2021.
Calculate the commute price paid by using a 18 mpg SUV which is one of the mpg for a 2019 economy SUV, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. If you drive 18 miles to work one way, that would cost about $4.37, depending on traffic. It’s $8.74 a day for the round trip commute and about $44 each week. That’s $176 per month.
An 18-mile commute at 18 mpg would have cost $2.903 last year on average, according to the AAA.
A 36-mile round trip commute would have cost $5.806 in 2021. That’s about $29 a week at five workdays.
So, for those who drive a 36 mile round trip each day to work for five days, that’s $15 more each week compared to 2021. Or about $60 per month more.
The map graph from the S.D. DLR below shows commuter patterns for the entire state. About 25,400 people employed in South Dakota live outside the state. About 19,000 live in the state but work outside the state. The bulk of people (363,267) employed in the state live in the state.
While many in-state workers have less than 10 miles to commute the next largest group of commuters are those who commute more than 50 miles.
About 64,000 people have a commute of more than 50 miles for 16.5% of the workforce in the state.
For those who live in Campbell County in northern South Dakota, a commute of even 55 miles will be cheaper than in Minnehaha County because the average price per gallon is $4.099 in Campbell County, according to the AAA.
The average price is $4.34 in Minnehaha County.
There were 320,501 passenger cars registered in the state in 2021.
The average mileage for a 2019 car was 24.9 mpg, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) shared by the University of Michigan.
If the commute is 51 miles in an average 2019 car with about 25 mpg, then it’s about two gallons of gas one way at $4.369 for a total of $8.738. It it’s 102 miles round trip that’s about $17.50. That’s about $87.50 for a total five-day work week.
The same daily commute was at $2.908 per gallon in 2021, which is about $11.60 for a 102-mile round trip daily commute. That totals about $58 for a five-day work week.
It’s not just workers who live and commute in South Dakota who are impacted by higher gas prices. The DLR said workers from at least six other states work in South Dakota.
About the same amount of workers live Iowa (6,959) and Minnesota (6,770). Another 4,714 live in Nebraska.