5 Tips for Riding Public Transportation in Athens

"Uber everywhere" was the motto pre-college, but as most of us car-less college students know, Uber ride costs add up and with a college budget we have to have other ways to get places. Carpooling is an option (and environmentally sound), but we can't always rely on someone to haul us back and forth. Thankfully Athens transport offers free bus rides for UGA students so that we can get to and from wherever we need to go. Here are five tips for riding public transportation in Athens so that you have a smooth ride.

1. Bring Your Student ID

Athens Transit offers free unlimited transportation for all students of UGA, but only if they have a valid student ID. If you don't bring your student ID then you'll need $1.25 in exact change for each ride. 

2. Arrive Early

When it comes to the buses it's best to get to the bus stop at least 15 minutes early because there's nothing worse than coming on time and finding out you have to wait 45 minutes for another bus because your bus came early. You can also track the location of the bus you need via the UGA app.

3. Plan Ahead

The best plan for taking the bus is to have no plans for the day. Plan where you need to go the day before so that you know which stop to get off at, check the weather so that you don't get caught in the rain without an umbrella (wear the comfortable shoes and clothing), arrive at the bus stop early, and try not to have anything planned too soon after you get on the bus because sometimes the buses run late.

4. Pay Attention

The one thing that can be worse than missing your bus is missing your stop, so always pay attention to your location. We also always need to make sure to pay attention to our surroundings, because safety first. 

5. Pack an "Emergency Kit"

There is no such thing as being too prepared, so make sure to bring basics such as: a phone charging cable, a portable charger, headphones, an extra form of ID and emergency cash. If you're going to the grocery store it's always good to bring reusable shopping bags because they're easy to carry and you don't have to worry about your bags ripping (not to mention that you aren't using plastic).

It may seem like a lot to ride the bus and the first ride can be a headache, but once you've done it a few times you'll become a pro, so happy riding!