There are lots of pros and cons associated with various methods of transport, with the most popular concern relating to traveling via public transport being an easy place to pick up germs and illnesses from fellow passengers. In theory, being in a confined space with people who are coughing, sneezing and spreading their germs when holding onto the same rails/handles, will make it easier for germs to spread.
This can be particularly worrying during the winter months when people are more likely to be developing colds. The truth is, if you are in public places, you will be more liable to picking up germs from other people, whether it be from public transport or a public park. However, there are ways to counter the germs, such as wearing gloves when touching buttons, handles etc. on public transport and washing your hands when you have the first opportunity to.
Several research programs have been conducted around this grey area. One study looked at people who had an acute respiratory infection and whether they had traveled on public transport in the five days leading up to the illness. They found that they were 6 times more likely to be diagnosed with an ARI than those with a different infection. However, they also found that regular riders were perhaps building up greater immunity to germs and that the public transport passengers who use public transport less frequently were more likely to pick up an illness.
Public transport does have its benefits, though. Catching the bus usually lessens stress as opposed to driving and getting caught in bad traffic. You should also find you walk more, as you no longer drive door-to-door. You will also save money, and be contributing to the environment as it is more economically friendly compared to other modes of transport.
If you are concerned about picking up germs whilst using public transport then there are a number of alternatives. Depending on how far you need to travel, you could incorporate more exercise into your lifestyle by walking or cycling to your destination. A lot of companies have cycle to work schemes set up to help employees get a discount on bikes and accessories. Not only does this give you lots of extra exercise, but you will save a considerable amount of money compared to the costs of public transport. This could mean huge savings over the course of a year.
Cycling isn’t everybody’s cup of tea, so if you really want to avoid public transport then driving may be the better option. If you haven’t yet learnt to drive, there has never been a better time to start. With online help and guidance for your theory test, you have everything you need when preparing to get your driving license.
You could even look into car sharing options, as more and more people are looking to spread the costs of traveling between groups of people who make the same journey. This is a lot better option in terms of the environment and you won’t have to worry as much about picking up an illness due to the few numbers traveling with you.