Commuting from place to place is often unavoidable. With rising living costs and a lack of accommodation, commuting is sometimes the best choice. As a past student commuter, I hope to give you some insight into this dreaded reality, and how it isn’t always doom and gloom.
I commuted for two years before I was able to secure accommodation. The time spent travelling up and down, day in and day out, has brought a lot of things to my attention. For context, my day would begin at 5:30 each morning and end around 22:00 or 23:00.
There are a lot of factors that come into play.
“Have you packed your lunch?” “Have you checked the weather?”
“Don’t forget to buy the ticket.” “Wait, will I make it in time for class? nope, need to take the earlier train.”
That’s not all. Over time, people adjust to circumstances that they find themself in. I always found that amusing. So, let’s talk about public transport. I don’t like to complain, I find it makes my day less productive and puts me into a sluggish mood. However, I cannot come to terms with the lack of public transport in Ireland. I can easily contrast it with countries such as Germany or Belgium. Every part of the country is connected by transport that runs every few minutes. Worst case scenario, every hour. Yes, you read that right.
Can you imagine our train stations running every hour? I think when people think about commuting, this is a huge barrier. A turn off as such. As I said, negatives are what they are, the positive side of things have occurred when the fares were cut down for young adults. Low fares will always be welcomed.
What can I say, social life exists to a bare minimum. I wish I was speaking about clubs and pubs, but I am really going down the road of attending society meetings and events that run in the evenings. I would either miss things I would have wanted to attend, or I would stay with a friend that lived in Galway.
Living in Galway at the moment has changed how I socialise. I can attend the movies, plan my evenings with friends and stay in the library until late. The only positive thing I can think of is the fact that you can meet some great friends while commuting. It’s likely you will be taking the same type of transport and follow the same timetable.
Time is of the essence. You won’t have the comfort of getting home early to sit by a desk of some kind to do some study or complete assignments. Some forms of transport will not allow you to get much work done. However, reading (if you don’t have motion-sickness) can be easily done. The best advice here is to plan ahead.
Commuting is all about planning! When asked, “is it worth it?” In many ways yes. You’re saving money and sometimes, well, it is the only option. On the other hand, there are quite a few disadvantages or things that might make your day a little bit more tiring.