Thanks to the various factors, including the price of gasoline and global warming, owning a car became way less popular compared to previous decades. Nowadays, young generations are not interested in owning a car. The main reason for that is that there are many car alternatives you can use to get around big cities. This especially works if you are a tourist, and your usual way of transport is out of the question because you want to explore the city and experience it first-hand. There are many ways of transport that offer a full immersion in the city, letting you feel the true spirit of the place. And they are also much more energy-efficient, less expensive and greener compared to the car. Without further ado, let’s check these alternative urban transportation methods.
Although this way of commute still includes cars, it is still a move toward smaller car use and smaller CO2 footprint. Ridesharing services, such as Uber and Lyft gained popularity recently, with the possibility of ride-sharing between tourists heading in the same direction. Certain sites have rare parking spaces and stern vehicle emission plans. That’s why there are carpool services for people going in the same direction. In case you cannot carpool with others, many cities have car-sharing services. You can rent a car for a single journey, then drop it off at the assigned place or give it over to the next customer. Another service that keeps popularity lately is car rental by the hour. This way, a vehicle becomes a service instead of a property, and people are more responsible when using it.
Not only biking is quite a favored choice of many tourists, but it is also a great form of exercise. Furthermore, it doesn’t require much maintenance when riding a bike comparing to a car.
Newcomers to the city should invest some time in brainstorming the route to their destination first. There are many route planning sites that could be helpful, such as Google Maps. If the city you’re visiting provides any bike lanes, feel free to use them. Be cautious, though, because you will be driving near traffic, so obey traffic rules and signals. In case of bad weather or any other circumstances that would prevent you from biking, have a backup plan ready. Many European cities established biking services with bike stations located throughout the city. After you buy a short or long term subscription, you may pick your bike using a PIN number you’ve got. When you arrive at the destination just store the bike into the closest bike depot. If you are staying for longer, there is an option to buy a bike from a local shop and sell it back to them before leaving.
It is notable that scooters became really popular recently, and for a reason. If you use a scooter, you don’t have to spend money on gas, or repairs. Furthermore, scooters are totally green and give you a daily dose of exercise. Riding a scooter costs you less than a penny per mile, and saves a lot of time by avoiding traffic jams. There are also extremely easy to pack in spaces too tight for cars or bikes. If you want to personalize your city glider, you can order different parts and even different sizes, including kids’ scooters. That way you can explore the city familiarly using one of the most popular green vehicles in the market.
Of course, you can always go old school and try to cross the city on your foot. Not only walking is one of the best exercises imaginable, but you don’t have to worry about anything concerning the traffic and the money spent. All that is required from you are the map of the area and a good pair of footwear. Walking around the city is the best way to learn about it, and if you get lost you can always consult your map or ask a local for directions. Any place which is under 45 minutes of walking distance is worth strolling to, especially if you consider the money you will save and the fact that you won’t be late because of traffic jams or construction works. Just in case, leave yourself some excess time to get there.
Arguably the fastest ways to get around a city are metro and tram, considering the speed and the capacity of passengers they are capable to take in. The complexity of the metro and tram network varies from city to city. Bigger cities have huge branched out metro systems, while smaller cities are way less intimidating concerning the underground railways. In order to use these two to you need to buy a ticket which is usually sold right outside the entrance. However, the most popular way to get around the City is the bus. Some cities have dedicated tourist lines, but you can get through quite fine using the usual bus lines. Just remember that sometimes you have to signalize the bus driver you want to get in and get out. To ride the bus you will need the bus card, but you can also pay in cash. If you plan to use the bus frequently we recommend you getting a bus card because it is much more affordable than paying for each ride individually. Just don’t forget to consult all info you can find, including maps, bus, and metro routes, and various panels with service information.
If you ever find yourself in a new town is a tourist, bear in mind that there are many different ways to explore the city without driving a car. Depending on how how much time do you have at your disposal, you can use public transport and cover large distances in a short time, or you can rent a bike or scooter, so you don’t miss a thing during your stroll through the city. The only thing that limits you is your own imagination.