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My paper's status is "Ready for decision" for a month. Is it too early to write to the editor?

Hi, I submitted one paper to Transport Policy (an SSCI journal) on 4th July. It's almost 5 months since initial submission. The status changed to "Ready for decision" on 6th November and has stayed there for a month. I didn't get any notification when the status change occurred. Is it appropriate to send an inquiry to the editor now? Or should I wait longer? Normally how long does it take for the first decision for economic geographical SSCI journals? Sorry this is my first publication experience, please advise me. Thanks!

It is not uncommon for the "Ready for decision" stage to last for more than a month. So there's nothing to actually worry about. I think your submission is making progress at a decent pace. However, since it's been 5 months since initial submission, and nearly a month since the last status change, there's no harm in sending an inquiry to the journal now. Since this is your first submission, you should be mindful of the tone and level of politeness in your email. We have a handbook that provides templates for communicating with the journal. You can take a look if you wish to.

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