WEALTHY WEDNESDAY: Getting from Point A to Point B
Sure, you could rent a car to get you from your hotel to all the restaurants, shopping, nightlife and attractions in your destination city. But you could also dump your spare change and dollars down the toilet and you don’t see many people doing that, right?
Why not take advantage of public transit, which is offered in most major cities and really isn’t that difficult to learn, not to mention lighter on your wallet? I know what you’re thinking: Kris, you talk about public transit all the time on this blog, puh-leaze. You’re right! So I’ll make sure to not focus on the “duhs” of public transit but the secret savings you might not know about it.
Group rates: Some public transit systems, such as the Toronto Transit Commission, offer a “family” pass (photo co come) that allows up to 2 adults and 4 kids to use a single public transit card for as many rides as they like within a 24-hour period. It only costs $10.75, whereas a one-way ticket for one person costs $3. The pass pays for itself, even if it’s just you and a loved one (since it would cost $12 total for two round-trip tickets). The catch? The family pass is only good on Saturdays, Sundays and statutory holidays.
The constant traveler: The Chicago Transit Authority offers a slew of fare options but the ones I have always found most useful are the 1-day or 3-day passes. At just $10 and $20, respectively, it’s a nice alternative to paying the single fare of $2.25. If you’re going to be on the move a lot, it’s worth ponying up the extra money up front for a 3-day pass. If you think about it, you’re already ahead of the game with your ninth trip on a 3-day pass and three trips a day is not that far-fetched in the Windy City. It’s an even better deal if you can score one of the frequent Groupon deals for a $9 3-day pass.
Feels like Disney World: Some cities, like Detroit, “boast” a People Mover, or a mono- or dual-rail transit system. In Detroit, it’s a common practice for visitors to park in the Greektown Casino parking lot for free – that’s right, free – and then either hoof it or hop on the People Mover to nearby attractions, especially the North American International Auto Show at Cobo Hall or a Lions or Tigers game. The best part? A one-way ride is just 75 cents, but the view is priceless. The one downside is that the train runs in only one direction so, if the stop you need is the next station one way but the train is going the opposite direction, settle in for a long ride. Indy is also home a People Mover that connects its three major downtown IU Health hospitals; however, unless you’re lucky enough to park in one of the facilities on a free day and your final destination is the IUPUI campus, then it’s probably not an efficient means of travel (even though it’s free).