Traffic woes in Oslo

Oslo congestion is the worst in Scandinavia

Photo: Pudelek (Marcin Szala) / Wikimedia
Traffic on the E18 in Oslo.

Michael Sandelson
The Foreigner

Dutch sat nav company TomTom’s Traffic Index 2016 lists Oslo as having had 24 traffic hotspots last year.

Journeys took 38 minutes extra during peak hours (vs. one hour of driving in uncongested conditions) on a daily basis (weekdays). Morning peak travel times increased by 57 percent and evening peak ones by 69 percent (both measured in relation to uncongested situations).

Monday and Tuesday mornings, as well as Thursday evenings, were the worst times of the week.

Congestion levels in Oslo were around 25 percent in 2010-14. These jumped by five percent for 2015-16, giving the Norwegian capital extra travel times of 30 percent.

Oslo is in 52nd place on TomTom’s European city rankings and comes 81st on the company’s world scale of cities (with a population of over 800,000, but encompassing all city sizes). Both rankings are based on the congestion level (extra travel time).

Figures for the other three Nordic capitals surveyed, in descending order, are:

• Stockholm: 28% extra travel time (33 minutes per day); morning peak 48%, evening peak 61%; 65th in Europe, 92nd in world.

• Helsinki: 26% extra travel time (27 minutes per day); morning peak 40%, evening peak 48%; 127th in Europe; no world ranking, as less than 800,000 live in the Finnish capital.

• Copenhagen: 23% extra travel time (26 minutes per day); morning peak 47%, evening peak 40%; 86th in Europe, 124th in world.

The world’s top five worst cities, in descending order, were Mexico City (Mexico), Bangkok (Thailand), Jakarta (Indonesia), Chongqing (China), and Lodz (Poland).

The U.S.’ Knoxville (Tennessee), Winston-Salem (North Carolina), Dayton (Ohio), Syracuse (New York), and Greensboro-High Point (North Carolina) were the world’s best—again, in descending order.

TomTom’s full list, which covers 390 world places, can be found at

This article was originally published on The Foreigner. To subscribe to The Foreigner, visit

It also appeared in the March 24, 2017, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.

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