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New To Winter Bus Travel? 20 Tips From Fellow Riders

winter bus travel

Winter is one of the best times of year to switch up your commute and try using public transportation. Catching the bus instead of driving means avoiding scraping and deicing your car, driving on slick roads, and the general stress of winter travel. For those of you considering getting on board this winter, who better to learn the rules of the road from then tenured Rapid riders? We asked our Facebook fans to share their top winter bus travel advice. Spoiler alert: Dressing warm is a definite must. Find what other tips are necessary for safe, warm, and relaxing bus travel this winter:

1. “Use the bus don’t drive! The bus will not get stuck, saves time shoveling out in the morning and is warm when you jump on.” – Timothy Wolfer
2. “Have your fare ready before you get on the bus…if the roads are bad every second adds up. The driver wants to make line up just as badly as you do.” – Andrew Dykstra
3. “Be nice to your bus driver; especially if the weather’s bad. They have NO CONTROL over the onslaught of snow, unplowed or poorly plowed roads, other drivers, backed-up traffic, etc. And chances are good that they’re just as frustrated about the situation as YOU are. If you get stuck in stand-still traffic for up to two hours (it’s happened before), just remember that it’ll be a much more tolerable two hours for EVERYONE on the bus if you try to make nice with the driver and other passengers.” – Cory Anne Stickel
4. “Which reminds me: bring something to keep yourself occupied during the trip Just in case it takes a while. Books and MP3 players are always a good choice.” – Cory Anne Stickel
5. “Wear boots. It is well worth the hassle of changing shoes when you arrive at your destination.” – Matt Anderson
6. “Even though the sidewalks are not always plowed, DO NOT stand in the road – not even in the median of the side street. The “added convenience” is not worth the risk of getting slid into or run over by a car.” – Chris Koens
7. “Plan your trips carefully especially on the weekends. Always take the bus before the bus that you need. Worst case scenario you will be early for work.” – Maggie Hall
8. “Transfer at the station instead of waiting outside.” – Lee J. Lamberts
9. “Make sure to leave enough time for delays in travel.” – Alan Graham
10. “Dress warm,dress in layers and be prepared for the sidewalks and walkways not to be shoveled!” – Meagan E. Jansen
11. “Use the bus tracker app [myStop for iOS] to check for delays ahead of time and stay indoors as long as you can and find a coffee shop or restaurant near your stop if possible.” – Eduardo A’carrochio
12. “[Wear] long underwear. Even when it dips into the 20s I find short periods outdoors in regular attire to be reasonably comfortable. And long underwear really isn’t a heat problem when you are just sitting at a desk. It is the perfect layer.” – Adam Tauno Williams
13. “Prepare and expect delays.” – Terry Simmons
14. “Take it slow because the aisle is always wet.” Spencer Anthony
15. “Wear your boots…and don’t forget your mittens and a hat.” – Tom Adams
16. “Merino wool socks in addition to boots can be a lifesaver for your feet!” – Angi Zamarripa
17. “Stay back away from the curb while waiting for bus or when your going to get on the bus.” – Nanette Rolph
18. “Catch the bus prior to your normal scheduled one and LAYERS, LAYERS, LAYERS…” – Anthony Robinson
19. “Check the real-time schedule info for your bus before heading to the stop.” – John Collins Mitchell
20. “Wear boots, layers, gloves and a hat — have a comb and change of shoes either at work or in a bag you carry. actually i wear two coats!” – Dan Cooke

Enjoy safer winter bus travel this season with the help of your fellow rider’s advice.

Written by The Rapid

The Rapid (Interurban Transit Partnership) is the authority that provides a variety of public transportation services for the Grand Rapids metro area and beyond. It is organized and operates under Michigan Public Act 196 of 1986.