Public transport refers to the forms of transport that are available to the public. Examples include buses, trains, and pooled means.
These forms of transport charged set fares that depend on the distance of
travel and run on fixed routes. Compared to using personal cars for transport
from one place to another, public transport has advantages and disadvantages.
Advantages of Public Transport
- Public Transport benefits the entire community financially. For every coin invested in this form of transport a lot of money in economic returns are generated.
- Public Transport reduces air pollution. Since it moves very many people on one vehicle, it produces substantially less air pollution per passenger compared to other means.
- It increases fuel efficiency per passenger per mile reducing the overall energy required for transportation.
- Public transport ferry many more people into a small space compared to individual automobiles and hence reduce traffic congestion.
- It is the only means in certain areas like the central business district of most urban centers.
- It allows people who cannot afford to buy their personal cars to get to school, work, grocery or even hospital.
- Since one person is driving, this means of transport frees up a significant amount of time and attention for riders.
- It eliminates the need to identify and pay for parking spaces at the various destinations.
- It is a lot safer than other means because the vehicles must meet high safety standards to be used for public transport.
- It encourages healthier lifestyles for passengers to get a higher amount of physical activity on a daily basis than those who don’t.
- It reduces the amount of time spent on maintenance and servicing of the personal vehicle.
- Since public transport follows fixed time schedules a user can easily predict his or her arrival time.
- It provides an opportunity to make new friends, especially when traveling over long distances.
- The vehicles used for this mode of transport have adequate, safe and secure compartments dedicated to carrying luggage.
- Riders get ample time to engage in their favorite hobby like reading novels and playing computer games.
Disadvantages of Public Transport
- Public transport can be slower than traveling using your personal car due to strongly prescribed speed limits.
- Public transportation may not stop at the precise address that a passenger is traveling to forcing them to look for additional means.
- The fixed schedules that public transport follows may not mesh precisely with the travel demands of some users.
- Privacy is compromised a great deal. Travelers are crowded and personal space may not be available.
- Since space is limited, this means is inappropriate for some errands like traveling with children with special needs.
- If special hygiene is not practiced, passengers can contract some communicable diseases due to the limited space.
- Breakdown of public transport vehicles can lead to huge loss of time for a large number of people.
- Most vehicles used for this means are not modified to suit people with disabilities.
- It has a low level of comfort. Public transportation is more comfortable to seat in a personal vehicle than in a public service vehicle.
- Prices of public transport vary from time to time and predicting the money necessary for a given period is difficult.
- Irate, noisy and talkative passengers can give a hard time to their possibly busy co-passengers.
- Some public transport crews play too loud music forcing the passenger to should to signal the driver to stop.
- Should a passenger forget a valuable item in a public transport vehicle chances of recovering it are minimal.
- It is not flexible because, if there is a sudden change of plan, a traveler must wait until the next stage to alight.
While it is good for the environment and the economy, public
transport has its disadvantages as well. The fixed schedules mean it does not
suit certain purposes. It is important to weigh the benefits vis-à-vis
disadvantages when deciding the means that best suits a given function.
By: Joni Kim