Public transport is a great way to travel around Sydney, but it can be quite confusing. This guide will help you get the most out of your public transport experience.
You can use this guide to plan your journey, download a trip planner and check train timetables.
While planning your trip, you should always make sure to check timetables for when trains will arrive at your destination (and get off when they do) and how long they’ll take. It is important to note that while the times shown are estimates, public transport services are generally reliable and on time.
When planning your trip, it is always best to confirm the details if it’s unclear about what time or train service you should expect when you arrive at your destination or depart from there.
If you are a frequent carpooler, you may be thinking about how to get cars off the road when you need them. You could try ride-hailing services like Lyft, or renting a car from a company like Car2Go.
Or you could just buy a new car every year and leave it in your driveway so that you can use it at least once a year. But plenty of people branch out and start using something much more flexible: public transportation.
Carpooling is an easy way to take advantage of the flexibility of public transportation without having to own a car or pay for parking. It’s also one of the cheapest ways to get around town (although there are some caveats). Everyone with a smartphone can use public transit and many people do. So why not?
The most expensive option is taxis, which will also likely be too expensive unless you’re willing to pay $50 or more per day for parking. Taxi fares aside, cabs are only effective if there are lots of people willing to pay for their services and if they have their own vehicles (which means owning them).
There’s also the problem that taxi metres usually don’t work in many places, making it difficult for passengers to check on who owns what vehicle before they get into freeway traffic.
So we came up with an alternative that’s cheaper than taxis but still flexible enough for people who have cars but want more freedom than taxis offer:
Ride-hailing apps are another option that’s less expensive than cabs but more flexible than ride-sharing services (unless Uber comes back). Uber works by taking shared vehicles and offering them as rides (think Lyft on steroids).
The driver has full control over how long his/her trip lasts, how much he/she charges, and whether or not he/she picks up passengers after the journey begins — so long as he/she stays within his/her agreement with his/her passengers on each trip.
So what kinds of cars does this mean we can grab? Well first off, if we’re going somewhere very close to our destination then the main option is probably an UberX vehicle (which means owning your own vehicle definitely makes sense), but if we’re going farther away from home then an UberXL vehicle might be
Biking or walking
In many places around the world, people take public transit to work. It’s a long, slow and often dangerous commute. For many people, it’s almost a necessity. We don’t know if that’s the case in Australia or not, but we do know this:
There is a large percentage of the population in the world who use public transit to get to work, and when they do so, they are doing so by bike or walking. In fact, it is estimated that for every 10 people walking to work, 5 are using bikes.
One of our customers does this as well as we do (he owns and rides both a bike and a car). He says that he can get from his house to his office in about 7 minutes on foot (he lives on a busy thoroughfare with no sidewalk) — he walks about an hour each way each day and has done so for years.
The cost of living here means he doesn’t own a car but lives within 4 minutes of where he works. This is just one example — there are more like it across all parts of Australia — there are also some very positive ones out there as well (like my friend who used his bike in his parking lot).
If you want to stay healthy while commuting or simply reduce your carbon footprint, biking or walking will be worth your time. It works for most people too! And it’s safe too!
In fact according to [this 2012 study] , 90% of Australians surveyed agree or strongly agree that biking or walking is good for them. Biking or walking is also great exercise; research has found that daily moderate exercise can lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels which translates into less heart disease risk in later life.
I suppose you could argue that you’re one of those 10% who walk/bike/hike without thinking about it? Who says “no” when there’s $1 for being involved? I’ve seen people say “hey I don’t have access to public transportation” even though they could ride their bike all day if they wanted to. It’s not hard at all! So if you’re looking for cheap ways to get from point A to point B (especially if you’re using public transportation) then why not consider Biking or Walking instead?
Taking the bus
An interesting distinction between public transport and private transport: in one case, the price is set by the government, and as a consequence, it uses public infrastructure to provide public transport; in the other case, it’s private infrastructure that provides public transport. This is a great way of thinking about how governments (and most of us) choose our life paths.
A question someone once asked me was: how does a person who is not interested in public transport choose to get around? I would explain that one should look for the lowest price possible for all services, then ask which service is available on any given day. Then use this information to decide what mode of transportation will get you from your place to your destination. Of course, this works only if one knows where they want to go and what they want to do with their day, but it’s a good start anyway.
I have no idea why people still use buses when there are so many other options out there.
There are many different ways to get to work. We have a little bit of diversity. In the early days, I used to take my bike everywhere, but even that wasn’t always optimal. It depends on what you value most (and how much you value it).
You could either get there via public transport and save money (but then again, you could ride your bike for a few hours every day — just not for work). Or you could drive yourself as a social opportunity:
I personally don’t like driving, but I love having my wife drive me everywhere.
You can also choose your commuting method based on your own preferences and needs:
If I have time at home, I don’t mind driving myself and if my wife is working late I’ll do the same.
My wife works in an office so we can drive ourselves back home (at night), but she has to take the Uber if she wants to go out after work.
If she wants to go out after work she needs to drive herself as well (it also helps with her car insurance payments). If she doesn’t need an Uber though it can be an inconvenience for her.
For her it’s a convenience that probably isn’t worth paying for when we consider other reasons like how long the trip takes or how much it costs to get there by public transport or by car.
We are lucky enough that our company has cars which are often used as taxis [for a small fee] so people don’t need to worry about having their cars stolen or damaged — one of the reasons why we decided this way of commuting was better than taking public transport or getting dropped off in front of our offices (which happens sometimes anyway given our city is quite large).
Consider your options for the best way to get to work
What if we have children and they have not been picked up at school by the time we arrive at your place. What if they are late and they are standing around on the street waiting for us. What if they miss the tram or bus so will have no choice but walk home?
Do we have time to drive them home and catch them on the way in so that we can watch them cross the road safely as they leave their house and enter your car park?
What if it is raining and really dark outside and we are late for our appointment so would like to get there just an hour before. What if it is dark out and raining heavily outside, but it’s nice and warm inside? Would that be too cold for kids who want to stay inside playing video games all day long ?
Would being able to pick up my kids from school tomorrow morning before 9am be better than being able to catch an 8pm tram/bus/tram/train/bus back home with just 20 minutes notice besides having enough time / money / energy (and whatever else) left over for dinner tonight…and then use all of that up on breakfast tomorrow morning before work.