Everyone knows you’re never going to have an easy commute in the city – you might get lost, traffic might be gridlocked or your train, tram or bus could be cancelled or delayed. It is, however, survivable – read on to find tips for surviving the commute to La Trobe!
If you drive:
Avoid peak hour at all costs!
Seriously, treat any time between 2:30pm and 6pm like the plague, it’s not worth it. Unless, of course, you aim is to be sitting on a street that’s more like a car park.
Learn the backstreets.
Yes, going through back streets may make your commute to La Trobe more complicated but I can promise you it’s a lot better than twiddling your thumbs and wishing you were anywhere other than the same place you’ve been sitting for the past ten minutes because traffic is horrible.
Buy a parking permit.
Sure, they’re expensive but if you’re on campus for more than a few hours each week they’re worth it. They’re a lot cheaper than other payment methods and definitely better than the parking fines you’ll get if you choose to skip paying completely.
Carpool if you can.
It might take some organisation and juggling of classes so your timetables match up but the reward is effectively half price parking and petrol and more free car spots so everyone wins.
Oh and they have special car spots for people who car pool!
Accept car park problems.
Most of the time it’s going to take you forever to find a car spot and just when you think you’ve finally found one you’ll come across a tiny car hiding at the front of it. Accept it, life is much better once you do and you may as well because it’s not going to change any time soon.
If you take public transport:
Study while you’re on there.
You’re going to be stuck there any way so you may as well make good use of your time. Your workload will seem smaller because it’s more spread out and if you get the majority of your studying done while travelling you’ll have more free time for fun stuff.
Unless you’re 100% certain of your route, triple check everything.
Melbourne’s public transport system can be pretty confusing for someone who’s new to the area or hasn’t travelled on a specific line before. You might need to switch between services so you’ll need to make sure the timetables match up and with so much going on all the time it pays to make sure you’re getting on the right train.
Pay attention when Public Transport Victoria (PTV) says things.
Services are always being altered, added and removed so if you rely heavily on public transport, PTV’s website will be your best friend – or at least one of your most visited sites.
Make sure you have a student myki.
They’re not essential but they get you cheaper travel so you may as well do it.
Always leave more time than you think you’ll need.
You never know what’s going to happen so it’s a good idea to leave at least ten minutes before you need to so if there are minor issues you’ll still get to uni on time.
Find a method of transport that works for you – and stick with it.
There’s no point driving one week and catching public transport the next. By all means if you want to then do so but you’ll find things a lot easier if you get into a routine.
Don’t expect to get anywhere quickly.
Sure, sometimes your commute to La Trobe will be short and hassle free but if you’re expecting everything to take a while, these trips will seem like a bonus and you won’t be so put out when a trip that should take five minutes takes twenty.
Hopefully these tips will make your commute better, if even only a little. And remember, if all else fails you can always just try to work out your timetable so you can avoid peak times and get most of your classes out of the way with just one trip.