For the last few weeks I’ve been taking public transport to and from work. I generally enjoy it. You see and hear a lot of interesting and humorous things on the train. Sometimes I run into a friend and that always makes the journey more enjoyable.
The train is packed when I take it both in the morning and afternoon. At first, I was confused about how to fit in with the rush hour train traffic, but now it’s been a month. So, I’m an expert and totally qualified to give you seriously skilled and insightful tips on travelling in Melbourne’s Metro trains.
Don’t worry about where you need to go. Just hop on a train.
Seriously, don’t do this. Melbourne’s train network appears simple on the surface, but is actually a complex labyrinth full of illusions. About three different lines run on the same tracks near my work and on multiple occasions I’ve had a local ask me what train we’re on only to discover she was on the wrong line. Pay attention when you’re at the station. Download the Public Transport Victoria app here to view service times and map your journey.
Put your earphones in, turn the volume all the way up, and forget about the world.
Seriously, don’t do this. It’s negligent. You could miss important announcements at the train station about delays, which train is actually arriving, and emergencies. It’s also really annoying when someone behind you (read: me) says pardon because she needs to get out and you don’t budge since you can’t hear a bomb go off.
Take your place in the train right by the door and don’t budge.
Seriously, don’t do this. It’s just annoying. We all have somewhere to go and we all know it’s tight so move over or step out for a moment and let people out of the train. And then let other people in. Move in to take advantage of the space.
Kick back and take your shoes off.
Seriously, don’t do this. I know you’re tired and I understand your feet may be achy, but unless you’ve been working at the beach, there is no excuse to expose us to your tootsies especially after a long day in the office.
Snack on gooey fermented soy beans.
Seriously, don’t do this. I’m not against eating on the train. Some people have long commutes or full schedules that give them little down time to sit down and eat. However, I shouldn’t leave the train smelling of your stinky food. Leave that for home.
Take up all the room you need. Bicycles, prams, luggage, a cello? No problem!
Seriously, don’t do this. The problem isn’t bringing a bicycle or a pram onto the train. The problem is bringing them onto the train during peak hours. I understand this is a sticky one, but let’s face it; there’s hardly enough room for people with their briefcases, laptop bags, and backpacks. Consider taking a cab or travelling a little earlier or later.
Do you have any advice for people travelling on public transport?