Train, Bus or Car

My youngest daughter has to buy a bus pass each term to cover her travel to/from her college in Telford. This also provides unlimited travel throughout the area every day of the week. Sadly, she lost the pass last week. It costs £5 to get a replacement (about the same as a normal peak-time return) the first time, and around £35 the second time. Fortunately, this is the first time she has lost the pass.

She has a letter from the college which lets her travel for a short time on a very limited number of services without the pass. All other trips have to be paid for.

For safety, we will often give her a lift when going to a strange area or when otherwise she would be at or walkking to a bus stop/station alone at night. For everything else, we expect her to use the buses. If she does ask for a lift, we ask her for fuel and time payback. The former based on the fuel efficiency of the car used (so she prefers lifts from her sister in the Golf to taking a ride in my heavy Mondeo estate). Payback of time is usually in the form of some baking – she makes superb cakes. She is choosing the bus over the car in many instances even though she is paying cash for the bus without her pass because using the cars costs so much more.

During the week, I currently work in Swansea. This is around 180 or 135 miles away, depending on whether or not I go on the potentially faster (but rarely so) route around the outside (M54, M6, M5, M4) or cross-country ( Via Bridgenorth or Shrewsbury, then near Ludlow, Leominster and across Brecon Beacons). The shorter journey uses more fuel even though it is shorter but because it is so windy. Either way takes at least 3 hours and usually closer to 3.5 hours plus one or two breaks on the way. I have looked at train options, but they are simply not practical. Several fast trains, or slow cross-country services both of which take longer than driving.

I stay in a rented flat during the week located in the Marina in Swansea. A great place to stay. Fortunately, rather than having to drive, there is a courtesy bus service. This leaves at either 7.45am or 8.15am and returns at either 6pm or 6.30pm. These timings make for a shorter but welcome day to that I am used to from most projects, but I have internet services in my flat and can carry on working in the evenings when I need to. It is nice not having to fuss with a car and parking during the week. I find though that I still get travel sick on the bus. I am just about okay if I can concentrate on looking where we are going, but if I start talking to someone, I usually feel pretty rough by journey end.

Not especially green, but trying to help a little.

Posted via email from kyber’s posterous

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