The Company Barclaycard Travel in Business Survey found that 45% of people claimed that every week they missed a meeting, went absent or were late due to congestion.
The research discovered that one in 10 commuters lost more than four working weeks a year because of delays. The average commuter spent 10 working days a year stuck in traffic.
And drivers are convinced that the situation is going to get worse, Barclaycard claimed. Three-quarters (76%) of company drivers believe their journeys are taking longer in 2003 than last year. The same number also feel that train and plane trips are not the solution, as they are subject to more delays as well.
Simon Chick, of Company Barclaycard, said: 'Last year business travellers and commuters had to cope with over two million roadworks and one in five trains arriving late. We are only in the second month of 2003 and already there have been reports that flights could face the worst ever delays this summer.
'Businesses are bound to be concerned about the rising costs of travel delays and it is not surprising that commuters are worried about spending even more of their time in traffic jams or waiting for trains.'
In a move intended to restore the confidence of business in the transport system, the Government announced a £2 billion road-widening scheme in December 2002. The announcement was an attempt to inject fresh urgency into the Government's 10-year transport plan, which many believed was falling well behind schedule only two years after implementation.