As if New Jersey drivers do not face enough daily commuting hurdles, a new survey officially sums up how bad the experience can often be.

Some New Jerseyans spend up to two weeks of their time each year sitting in traffic. (Maciej Korzekwa, ThinkStock)
Some New Jerseyans spend up to two weeks of their time each year sitting in traffic. (Maciej Korzekwa, ThinkStock)

According to’s new research, New Jersey ranks as the fifth worst state in the nation for drivers.

The study ranked all 50 states based on several factors, such as fatal crashes, car thefts, average commute times, gasoline spending, repair costs, and insurance premiums.

“A relatively cheap experience, has a low-cost-of-living experience, but also relatively safe, and low commutes,” said Chris Kahn,’s research and statistics analysts.

They say the worst for drivers is Louisiana, followed by California, Texas, Maryland and New Jersey.

The best states were Idaho, Vermont, Wyoming, Wisconsin, and Minnesota.

“Population density has a big effect on these ranking,” Kahn said. “The best states for drivers have lots of wide-open spaces, whereas the worst states tend to be filled with people and cars – a bad combination for drivers’ wallets.”

There are several vital elements, which NJ drivers are all-too-familiar with, working against our state’s ranking on the list.

New Jersey’s insurance premiums are right at the forefront.

“If you look at the comprehensive premium in New Jersey, it’s one of the highest in the country,” Kahn said.

The national average for insurance premiums is $911. The Garden State blows that out of the water with an average of $1266, which is the second–highest in the country.

New Jersey also beats the average commute time nationally, which is 24.4 minutes each way.

“27.7 minutes on average people spend commuting each way in New Jersey,” he said. “That was relatively high.”

Finally, New Jersey also paces above the rest of the country for repair costs. The average job sets residents back $447 versus $390 nationally.

Kahn said these negatives blend together and contribute to New Jersey’s poor ranking. He reiterated New Jersey’s population density and high cost-of-living as the main reasons why.

The report was not all bad news for New Jersey, though. While the positives did not necessarily save our state’s ranking, they did offer a silver lining.

New Jersey paces favorably versus other states for gasoline spending with a figure of $941 against the national rate of $949 per year.

Two other bright spots were New Jersey’s low fatal crashes and theft rates.

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