If you’re looking for a summer getaway and don’t want to drive or Uber everywhere, then we have 3 cities you must visit this summer. And… any reason to travel, right?
One of the best ways to explore a new destination is by public transportation! You get to learn how the locals’ commute, discover hidden gems and learn how to navigate a new city at a low cost. On your next trip, consider getting around by public transportation instead of driving or ride-sharing. You’ll save $$$ and you’ll be sure to have an adventure of a lifetime!
Here are 3 popular U.S. cities that you must visit this summer just for the public transportation!
New York City
Vacation like a real New Yorker and ride the Subway! New York is a big city and The New York Metropolitan Transport Authority (MTA) can feel intimidating, but you’ll be a pro in no time! Start by figuring out where you’re staying in the city. Midtown? Uptown? Brooklyn? Right in the middle of Time Square? Then figure out what you want to do and find the nearest subway stop and buses.
For example, if you want to get to Times Square, you’ll find that several train lines run through the station (N, Q, R, S, W, 1, 2, 3 and 7) and Times Square, 42 Street station will be the most popular stop. Always check the subway map to double-check you’re getting on the right train and headed in the right direction. It’s best to grab a MetroCard and either pay as you go or buy an unlimited pass, depending on how long you’re in town. And while you’re in town, consider taking a subway art tour (it’s free but make sure to tip your tour guide at the end)!
Parking in some neighborhoods (especially the downtown area) can be impossible, so skip that stress and get around like Chicagoans! The CTA (Chicago Transit Authority) is pretty easy to navigate and it’s the nation’s second-largest public transportation system. Whether you want to hop on the Blue Line and head to/from the airport, take the Brown Line for a scenic view of the Chicago Skyline heading towards the loop or take the Red Line all the way downtown for iconic sightseeing (i.e The Bean), you can pretty much grab a bus or a train to anywhere.
You can pay cash for single trip rides on buses but it’s better to purchase a reloadable Ventra Transit Card (you can pay as you go or buy unlimited passes anywhere from 1 day to 30 days). You can also buy a temporary visitor’s pass at any train stop through the Ventra machines at train stations.
You would think that a city made up of 49 square miles of steep hills, boulevards, and curvy streets would require a car. But it’s actually super easy to get around without a car!
With buses, ferries, streetcars, and trains, San Fran has all the options! Get yourself a Clipper Card and make the Muni and BART your best friends. The Muni covers buses and streetcars that go above and below ground. The BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) doesn’t have too many stops within the city, however, it’s a great way to get to the East Bay and the airport. And, of course, the ferries are a scenic way to get to a few places (and as a tourist, you must!). Consider taking a day trip on a ferry from San Fran to Oakland, Alameda, or Sausalito! Also, consider grabbing a bike as your transportation system for a day (San Fran is a popular biking city)!
Just like with any new city, learning a new transit system can be challenging but also exciting, especially if you’re a tourist! Traveling around via public transit can actually be fun! Once you get into the swing of things, you’ll be a pro in no time! And half the fun is figuring it out.
So what are you waiting for? Book your flight already! We’re DYING to know where you’re headed next. Let us know in the comments! #yolo