City bus travel

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by John Lee, Dec 31, 2012.

  1. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Dec 31, 2012

    Forgive my ignorance, but (generally) how do city bus systems work? As another 'resolution', I'd like to try and lessen my driving for work, particularly when there are viable alternatives (i.e. city bus). I work/live in a large suburban city, take anywhere from 5-10 miles max to get anywhere in the city.

    So anyway, I'm looking at the various routes, and I'm confused about a few things. First off, it appears that it costs a buck to jump on the bus for a ride. Now, if I jump on the bus nearest my house, it has a certain route--that I'm guessing just goes back and forth along that route all day. If I'm trying to go to another part of town... I don't get how I would get there? Does that route (that starts near my house) cross paths with other city bus lines (and as such, I'm supposed to jump off and jump on another line)? If that is the case, does that mean another dollar? That certainly means going out of the way (i.e. wasting time).

    I have other questions too, but the bottom line is that it doesn't seem viable on closer look. Even if I were going precisely to the destination where the one bus line ends, I'm still paying $1 both ways. That wouldn't be a significant cost savings (vs. driving my car), and would be slower. Am I missing something?
     
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  3. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Dec 31, 2012

    The easiest thing to do is get a monthly bus pass and you can take any bus, any time. The price depends on where you live, but here it's $76. (or something like that). It's probably cheaper where you are, because here it's $2.25 to catch a bus one way.

    Taking the bus would definitely save you a lot of money.
    Check out the transit's website, they'll show you routes, schedules and everything.
     
  4. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    Dec 31, 2012

    You might have to switch bus lines, walking between different stops. For example when I take the bus to/from work I take one, get off at the last stop, then walk down to my other bus stop and take that one home.

    Buses are cheap here (about 50cents max) and there's no such thing as a month pass. But if you plan on riding the bus that much you should get a monthly pass.

    Also, in the USA most buses will give you free (or cheaper) transfers. So if you pay to get on the first bus you ask for a transfer and can get on the next bus for free (using the transfer).
     
  5. dizzykates

    dizzykates Habitué

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    Dec 31, 2012

    You need to ask for a transfer to change lines without paying in most places. Some cities have free lines (Denver has a great one!) or reduced prices for traveling within a certain 'zone'.

    There should be a trip planner online that you can put in your starting place, ending place, distance you are willing to walk, a time frame you need to leave/arrive by, etc.

    $1/ride is CHEAP, it's $3.25 here during the day and $4.25 during rush hour.
     
  6. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Dec 31, 2012

    Yeah, this stuff confuses the heck out of me. When we went up North for a trip we were lost hillbillies just staring at public transporation maps and signs. :haha:

    Good luck!
     
  7. Rebel1

    Rebel1 Connoisseur

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    Dec 31, 2012

    Where do you live JL?
    I wish we had a buses :Drunning around here where I live.
    Rebel1
     
  8. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    You really think so? Because honestly, while I am considering doing it for societal/environmental effect, I would be stoked if it did save me substantially (money-wise). I did look at the transit's website, and google transit is a service that does lay out any route I would take, in getting to my various schools. It would more than double my commute (I guess I would just have to load up my phone and use it to be productive, pass the time).

    I really do want to try this, for as long as it might last. Maybe just this month... see how it goes?

    *Also, to a previous question: I'm in Southern California.
     
  9. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I think you would save money. $76 (or whatever it is in your area) vs all the gas money. That's a lot. Yes, it would take longer, but you could sit, relax, read, etc.
    The only possible problem is if something happens to the bus and it breaks down, etc. In that case I guess you could call a cab. It shouldn't happen too often.
    I say go for it, try it for a month.
     
  10. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    While taking the bus might save money, it might cost time. In my city it can easily take 2-3 hours to get from Point A to Point B on the bus, whereas it takes 20-30 minutes in a car. That's pretty substantial and worth considering.
     
  11. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Dec 31, 2012

    Much depends on the route, of course - but there's a lot to be said for being able to settle into a bus or trolley seat and let someone else worry about the traffic while one loses oneself in an eBook or audiobook or even catches a nap.
     
  12. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    I wouldn't have any idea how to ride a bus. I've never lived anywhere with busses or taxis. I never even rode a school bus other than on field trips.

    Good thing I can drive. :eek:
     
  13. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

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    Feb 16, 2013

    I've been doing it about a month... and I will certainly continue it, especially within the city. First of all, the route from my house to work is very convenient... I never would've even known about it. I think that's a cool thing too, knowing more about the city you live in. I like the fact that I arrive at school lively and refreshed (not overly sweaty). I like that it forces me to interact with folks (e.g. bus driver). I of course like the savings (it does save money, particularly because I don't bus back--I ride my bike home).

    I have another question, because I may be starting a LTS at another school. When you transfer buses to a different bus (company), can you still ask for a transfer (i.e. cheaper connecting fare)?
     
  14. Ms B IL

    Ms B IL Rookie

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    In my experience, the different bus companies are just that: different companies. Here there are 3 different bus companies in the metro area (I think) and they are not connected in any way. The fares are different, the fare cards are totally different, and they have nothing to do with each other.

    It would be like walking into Starbucks and asking them to give you your free refill for your 7-11 cup. They'd probably look at you like you were crazy.
     
  15. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Feb 17, 2013

    It's all confusing to me. I just follow my DH whenever I end up taking a bus. We have taken the underground train then walked a bit to get to a bus. In some cases you would have to get off and take another bus. Figuring out the bus numbers and what not is what confuses me...
     
  16. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Feb 17, 2013

    Taxis I can do, as long as I can explain in Spanish where i want to go. However, you won't save any money that way.
     

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