Using Public Transportation on Vacation


People who enjoy vacationing on remote beaches or lonely mountain ranges often find that their transportation options are limited. However, for travelers who remain close to civilization, mass transit and other public transportation options are key. Urban vacation destinations can be expensive, depending on the city, and spending extra money on taxis or rental cars can seem wasteful when convenient subways or bus lines exist. While not every public transportation system is created equal, a good mass transit system will elevate any trip.

As with all travel plans, making the most out of a foreign transit system requires a bit of planning. Vacationers looking to see as much of a city as possible will want to look into day passes or similar unlimited travel options, and a good transit map or smartphone app will make navigation a breeze. The destination is often the purpose for getting on the subway or queueing for the bus. However, in some cities, the public transportation network is a sight worth seeing on its own. The incredible efficiency of transit systems in cities like Taipei and Seoul are modern wonders. Meanwhile, cities like London and Paris have storied underground transit systems with rich and vibrant histories.

Of course, it pays to be aware of the shortcomings of public transportation, as well as the potential dangers. The close quarters and sometimes confusing directions make it easy for groups to become separated or unwary tourists to be robbed, so it pays to stay together and be alert. Likewise, it’s important to know when to forego public transportation. Many countries with dangerous public transit are unsafe in other areas. Even cities like Mexico City and New Delhi have been cited for problems with harassment, especially toward women. Those vacationing alone should be especially wary when taking public transportation, and traveling in greater numbers is always the safe choice.

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