People have more leisure time than ten years ago

news release no 164

People sleep on average 14 minutes longer, work 18 minutes less and dedicate 40 minutes more to spending leisure time per day than ten years ago, appeared from the Time Use Survey 2010 of Statistics Estonia. The previous survey was conducted in 2000.

In 2010 a person spent on average 11 hours on sleeping, eating and other personal care, five and a half hours on leisure time, three and half hours on household and family care and three hours on paid work per twenty-four hours. This is an average amount of time in hours, which contains the time spent by children and non-working household members and the time spent at weekends.

During ten years the time spent on working has shortened and the time spent on leisure has lengthened. At the same time unemployment was high in 2010 and this may be the reason for spending a smaller amount of time on paid work. Half of the leisure time or nearly two and a half hours per day is still spent on watching television but this is slightly less than ten years ago. Watching television has especially decreased among the young people aged 10–24 who were watching TV about 40 minutes less than ten years ago. At the same time this age group spends now nearly one and a half hours per day on computer activities.

Like earlier, a considerable share of leisure time is spent on communication (36 minutes per day). The computer has become very important in spending one’s leisure time, on which the same amount of time is spent as on communication. Leisure time is also spent on going to the theatre, cinema and concerts or reading books. 27 minutes per day were spent on going in for sports and this time has not increased much during ten years.

With regard to family and household connected activities, 53 minutes per day are spent on food preparation and this is nearly a quarter of an hour less than ten years ago. 24 minutes per day were spent on shopping and services and this time has not lengthened much over ten years, although many new shopping centres have been built.

A more detailed overview of the Time Use Survey is provided in the Statistical Database.

The Time Use Survey of Statistics Estonia was conducted in April 2009–March 2010 and 7,000 persons participated in the Survey. The data on time use were collected using a diary-method or all household members aged 10 and older filled in the diary regarding one weekday and one weekend day. It was possible to record activities with a 10-minutes’ interval.

Time Use Survey is a worldwide survey that is coordinated by International Association for Time Use.

Time use, 2010 and 2000*
Main activity 2010 2000 Trend during ten years
Personal care 11 h 8 min 10 h 46 min +22 min
…sleeping 8 h 53 min 8 h 39 min +14 min
…eating 1 h 21 min 1 h 14 min +7 min
Employment 2 h 57 min 3 h 15 min -18 min
Study 33 min 47 min -14 min
Household and family care 3 h 26 min 3 h 45 min -19 min
…food preparation 53 min 1 h 4 min -11 min
…shopping and services 24 min 23 min -1 min
Leisure time 5 h 38 min 4 h 58 min +40 min
…watching TV 2 h 24 min 2 h 27 min -3 min
…communication 36 min 35 min +1 min
…computing 36 min 2 min +34 min
Volunteer work and meetings 13 min 16 min -3 min
Unspecified time use 4 min 1 min +3 min

* Time use has been divided into seven main activities, which are in turn divided into sub-activities. In the table only some of the sub-activities have been presented.

For further information:

Piret Tikva
Leading Statistician
Population and Social Statistics Department
Statistics Estonia
Tel +372 625 9237