Traffic in Los Angeles: these pictures tell the real story...

Real Estate Agent with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices 01238708

This post is for our friend Debbie Reynolds , she has been visiting the Golden State for work related reasons... yes it is hard to take being in California in the Winter, specifically by the Pacific Ocean for a week.

Now keep in mind I took these pictures driving back from Palmdale, CA a 50+ mile ride of which gratefully the traffic was on the other side for about 49 miles and I was only cought up in the last four miles as I was heading home.

Now if you live in Los Angeles and ask someone how far some place is? They answer quickly in TIME not in MILES....i.e.: it is 45 minutes away, or it is an hour away. It is more realistic than tell some one it is 6.5 miles or 9 miles away.



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Sally K. & David L. Hanson
Keller Williams 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce

When we work with transferrng buyers from either coast they are amazed at how easily you can get around and often in less than 30 minutes you can be across several counties.

Feb 10, 2018 02:04 AM #1
James Dray
Fathom Realty AR LLC - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

Morning Endre.

After our visit to Wisconsin either this year or next, we plan on visiting California again.  I believe we'll be south of San Diego

Feb 10, 2018 02:09 AM #2
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
"Franklin MA Homes"

Good morning, Endre Barath, Jr. there's nothing worse than stalled traffic... I can't imagine it taking more than a few minutes to go 9 miles....  I complain about Franklin MA traffic!!!

Feb 10, 2018 02:59 AM #3
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty, 914-419-0270, - Monroe, NY
The House Kat

That's interesting that "distance" is told in time, not miles. But it totally makes sense - here it might take 6 minutes to drive 6 miles so I'd totally misjudge timing if I was out there.

Feb 10, 2018 03:05 AM #4
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel

Thank you for sharing. I have been to Los Angeles as well as San Francisco and have seen the traffic. I will never be able to drive there.

Feb 10, 2018 03:58 AM #5
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good morning Endre - well I guessed Debbie's location incorrectly.  Those pictures, except for the scenery, looked very similar to the capital belway I was on around DC yesterday.

Feb 10, 2018 04:30 AM #6
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker

Good morning Endre. Giving time for travel as opposed to distance is common here in Chicago too!! Enjoy your day!

Feb 10, 2018 06:18 AM #7
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning Endre. This is neat and I appreciate the standard of time rather than mileage. In my little area we use that too. Everything is about 20 minutes away.

Feb 10, 2018 07:05 AM #8
Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

It is difficult to show traffic, how can you express not-moving in a still photo? I can easily show you very similar photos. All you see is simply a lot of cars and break lights, this would be same in Orlando, and, probably in so many other places.

Feb 10, 2018 07:29 AM #9
Nina Hollander
RE/MAX Executive | Charlotte, NC - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

I had totally forgotten about that habit of telling people in time how far away they were from places in LA area. I remember sitting in huge traffic jams going back 40 years there.

Feb 10, 2018 09:35 AM #10
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


We still talk that way.  With all the mud hauling convoys of trucks (yes they are still hauling the stuff) we have to talk in minutes...what took less than 15 minutes is now taking 30 minutes...A

Feb 10, 2018 11:17 AM #11
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Endre if you were on the right side of the road, I would hate to see what the traffic looked like on the other side

Feb 10, 2018 12:52 PM #12
Nathan Gesner
American West Realty & Management - Cody, WY
Broker / Property Manager

When I lived on Oahu, it was 11 miles to work. It took 20 minutes for the first three miles and then ten minutes for the last eight. The commute home took ten minutes for the first eight miles and then 30 minutes for the last three. I will never, ever live like that again!

I now live six miles from work and my commute is ten minutes with just three stop lights to cross. At the height of tourist season, my commute may increase 2-3 minutes. That's living!

Feb 10, 2018 06:32 PM #13
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

I quickly noticed that the GPS said the miles were very manageable but the time was often unbelievable. For it to take an hour and half to go 20 miles was hard to grasp. The coming to dead stops was so frequent. It made me appreciate the thing I call heavy traffic at home when it takes 30 minutes to get from one side of town to the other. 

That said, the weather was lovely and the ocean so prettyand the food was really good.

Feb 10, 2018 07:54 PM #14
Diana Zaccaro
Tropical Realty Beachside power by eXp - Cocoa Beach, FL
Your Brevard County, Florida coastal connection!


Here on Cocoa Beach we measure distance by the number of traffic lights and landmarks. If going to the mainland, the number of causeways, rivers and canals.

If we have to give a time estimate, it is always a range "45 minutes to one hour in good weather and traffic" type of thing. I could never drive in the traffic you have in LA area.


Feb 10, 2018 11:31 PM #15
Curtis Van Carter
Better Homes & Gardens Wine Country Group - Yountville, CA
Your Napa Valley Broker Extraordinaire


They just rated San Francisco as the fifth worst city to drive in, in the WORLD. I know LA is bad, but WORLD. cheers cvc

Feb 11, 2018 10:27 AM #16
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

We do the same thing here, Endre Barath, Jr.! In fact, Charlotte's traffic has gotten so congested, there are certain times of the day that we all know which roads to take and which ones not to!

I had a developer build a home search for me that is for commute time - it's gotten that bad! As for mileage, I guess on that if they really want a mileage answer - with commute time, you have to be able to tell buyers what it is from every part of the city. It dictates where a lot of my relocation buyers move.

Feb 11, 2018 10:45 AM #17
Yolanda Cordova-Gilbert
Sitterle Homes - Richmond, TX
Sitterle Homes


 Our cousins who live in LA always say it depends on what time of day we leave. We landed at LA at 1:00 PM last year and had just barely enough time to get to the hotel make a quick change and I do mean quick to make our 6:30 reservation.

Feb 11, 2018 12:16 PM #18
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

In LA and San Fran public trasnport is a must where you can get it.

Feb 11, 2018 04:09 PM #19
Lisa Von Domek
Lisa Von Domek Team - Dallas, TX
....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless!

So true Endre Barath, Jr. I remember using time versus miles when I had to travel heavily in California years ago.  Now, I find myself using that same method with my Dallas traffic!

Feb 11, 2018 05:28 PM #20
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Endre Barath, Jr.

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