6 advantages of using public transport

Public Transport
Tom Haak

I am a keen user of public transport. In the last years more and more I see the advantages.

Apart from saving money and being environmental friendly I came up with six main advantages.

1. It is an excellent training in agility

My main travel in The Netherlands in the last three years has been between our home Zeist (a suburb near Utrecht), and my office in Amsterdam-South. Our home is 2.7 kilometers from the train station. Or 10 kilometers if I go to Utrecht station. I can walk (the 2.7), bike or take the bus (my favorite, bus line 50). From Utrecht you can go directly to Amsterdam-Zuid station, or via Amsterdam-Amstel station and than take the metro (line 51 to Westwijk). The good news: there are options: the bad news: especially in times of disturbances, it is very difficult to determine which option is best. Over the years I have build a good amount of tacit knowledge in what is the best way to travel under which circumstances. This helps my agility. If a train is delayed, I can quickly switch to plan B and run (I mean: walk) to platform 18,  where I can board another train long before the masses are there (if they ever catch it). Unfortunately my tacit knowledge only helps me in transportation from Zeist to Amsterdam-Zuid. 

2. You see and meet some people

When you are in a car you sometimes meet other people in other cars, but they are often aggressive (“Get out of my lane!”). When travelling you see hundreds of other people, and not only men in suits. Some of these people are aggressive (“This is MY door!”), but most of them are not. Most of them look at there smart-phone, others read a book or are busy on their lap-top.

3. It increases my mindfulness

There is ample time for meditation on the bus or train. The worst thing that can happen to you is that you miss your stop (or your suitcase, so meditate with your eyes open).

4. I save a lot of time

You can not compare the travel time by car and by public transport. If you are the driver in a car, you can not do anything else but drive. Some people say that car time is very productive for them, as they are constantly on the phone. This might be true, but phoning while driving is very dangerous. So even if the travel time by public transport is 50% higher than by car, the productive time in train and bus can be a lot higher.

5. Travel time is great thinking time

I need time to think and most of the time I can combine travelling and thinking. Best is trains, worst for thinking are short trips by plane.

6. It keeps you fit

You move a lot more when you travel by public transport, whether you want it or not. If you build in enough movement during your commute and work, you do not have to go to the gym, and that saves time again.

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