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Data Provider: Welsh Government National Statistics Commuting patterns in Wales by measure and year
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Total number of working residents1,227,8001,243,7001,268,4001,302,9001,310,6001,324,9001,340,4001,340,8001,309,6001,309,0001,316,6001,323,500(r) 1,351,500(r) 1,364,300(r) 1,381,800(r) 1,405,100(r) 1,426,0001,445,200
Total number of people working in the authority1,193,7001,204,1001,234,3001,262,5001,290,6001,298,9001,320,8001,320,9001,277,7001,275,9001,288,4001,281,200(r) 1,304,400(r) 1,332,900(r) 1,344,000(r) 1,355,100(r) 1,373,5001,397,500
Number of people working in home authority886,100894,200905,600923,900940,400939,400951,100955,200928,600925,600924,800915,300(r) 928,000(r) 945,900959,000(r) 962,200(r) 982,000991,200
Number of people commuting out of the authority72,20073,90076,30082,00072,40085,00080,00079,10079,60082,70083,40086,400(r) 89,50083,60085,800(r) 90,000(r) 94,70095,400
Number of people commuting into the authority38,10034,30042,20041,70052,50059,00060,40059,20047,70049,60055,10044,100(r) 42,50052,200(r) 48,000(r) 40,000(r) 42,20047,700


Commuting patterns by Welsh local authority

Last update
27 March 2019 27 March 2019

Next update
March 2020

Publishing organisation
Welsh Government

Source 1
Annual Population Survey, Office for National Statistics

Contact email

National Statistics

Lowest level of geographical disaggregation
Local authorities

Geographical coverage

Languages covered
English only

Data licensing
You may use and re-use this data free of charge in any format or medium, under the terms of the Open Government License - see

General description
This dataset provides information on commuting patterns by local authority in Wales and flows between Wales and the rest of the UK.

Data collection and calculation
ONS have reweighted the APS to take account of population data from the 2011 Census. Therefore, all estimates from quarter 4 of 2004 to quarter 3 of 2014 have been revised.

The Annual Population Survey, which includes the WLLFS, is an annual sample survey of households living at private addresses in the UK. The annual survey uses results from those sampled for the main quarterly Labour Force Survey and since 2001 additional persons have been sampled on an annual basis to provide a more robust (boosted) annual dataset across the UK, with estimates subject to much lower sampling variability. For Wales, the data are now based on an enhanced sample (around 350 per cent larger) compared to earlier years.

The additional persons sampled in the APS are based on four waves, over four years of the survey. For the first wave, the response rate in Wales is around 60%, with around 75% of these remaining by the fourth wave. In total, approaching 20,000 households are sampled each year for the APS in Wales.
The APS relates to calendar years, whereas the WLLFS used the year ending in February. Therefore values for 2001 to 2003 relate to the years ending February 2002, February 2003 and February 2004. Subsequent values relate to calendar years.

Frequency of publication

Data reference periods
2001 to 2018

Users, uses and context
We believe the key users of commuting in Wales statistics are:
Ministers and the Members Research Service in the National Assembly for Wales;
Other areas of the Welsh Government;
Welsh Local Authorities
Other government departments;
Students, academics and universities;
Individual citizens and private companies.
The statistics are used in a variety of ways. Some examples of the uses include: Advice to Ministers; Research and general background material;
To inform debate in the National Assembly for Wales and beyond.

Revisions information
In March 2019, the Annual Population Survey data has been revised back to 2012, due to taking on board the latest population estimates.

Statistical quality
As the LFS/APS is a sample survey all estimates are subject to sampling variability. This is because the sample selected is one of only a very large number of possible samples that could have been drawn from the population. Standard errors (SEs) are commonly used as indicators of the extent to which the estimate based on a sample differs from the true population value. The larger the standard error, the less precise the estimate is. Coefficients of variation (CV) give the standard error as a proportion of the
estimate itself.