5 Things To Remember When Traveling the Subway in NYC

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5 Things To Remember When Traveling the Subway in NYC

This blog is written by our Ferris State Intern Queen Campus Ambassador, Samantha B.

When interning/working in New York, if you’re thinking about bringing your car, expect horrible gas mileage in the city, tons of traffic, and aggressive drivers constantly honking and cutting you off.

The best way to travel, whether you’re in Jersey, Brooklyn, Manhattan, or the Bronx, is the subway. An unlimited 30-day pass is only $104 – saving tons of money on individual subway rides, taxi rides, gas for your car, and other costs, including time!

Here are five things to remember while traveling via subway:

1.      Have a subway map on your phone, or plan out your trip before you get on. If there is construction going on your stop, and the train isn’t stopping, you need a back up plan. Google Maps is going to be your best friend. If you need help or are unsure of something, ask a subway employee or a person nearby. People are willing to help you here, too!

2.      Bring a book, magazine, or iPod with you – always. My subway ride is a good 35-40 minutes. Cell phone service doesn’t exist underground, so texting is worthless. If you have games on your phone, they’ll come in good use. Otherwise, a good book or magazine is good to have when you get bored. A lot of people even have Sudoku books and crossword puzzles to keep them occupied during their rides.

3.      If you’re claustrophobic, you may want to consider other options. Late at night, subways can be really calm and kind of dead. However, if you’re traveling in the morning or during rush hour, especially on popular trains, it can get packed like a can of sardines. Don’t be afraid to sit down as soon as somebody gets up or to push your way through to get to a more open area or off the train. It’s New York, after all.

4.      If you get harassed about giving money to a bum, don’t hesitate to move to another part of the train, or even get off at the next stop to wait for the next one. Don’t get feisty with them or start getting into a battle of words – it’s better to be safe and ignore them. Possibly giving them a little bit of change will make them leave you alone too. If you’re going to give money to bums or musicians, have a special compartment in your purse or pocket where you keep a couple of singles. You should never bare your wallet full of 20’s to any stranger!

5.      Hang on tight and enjoy the ride. It can get a little bumpy and turbulent on the trains, so if you’re standing up, make sure you’re stable so you don’t stumble all over the train. All in all, the subway can be pretty relaxing and give you a little time to yourself. I’ve gotten lost in a book and caught up in baby watching and trust me – 99% of the time on the subway, it’s just a normal ride with normal people trying to get from A to B (or F to C to the 6, then walk a block). So don’t sweat it, and enjoy your time in the big city!