As a student who commutes into university from home, the current pandemic has made travelling a very difficult experience. Wearing masks and keeping social distance has meant that travelling on the London Underground requires a lot more vigilance, especially as we want to keep ourselves and others safe. But as someone who has lived in London my entire life, I have picked up some great tips over the years that, especially at this time, are very useful even if you are not a commuting student.
The first tip that I always try to follow is to move down the platform as the carriages towards the end of the train tend to be more empty. At a time when we want to limit interaction with others, this is great! And it gives you the chance to have a seat, particularly after a long day at university! But, be aware that this may not always be the case, as during rush hour trains tend to be extremely busy.
Another tip is to be aware of where the exit points are on a train platform and the points at which you can catch another train line. This is very important if you are in a hurry as it will allow you to know which part of the train to sit in so you are able to exit as quickly as possible or to change trains.
The final tip is to use the commuting time to your advantage. Whilst it may seem like a bore having to travel a distance to get to university, I find that the time allows me to have a period of self reflection to understand how my day or week has been. It can also be used as a time to read, listen to music or catch up with friends if you commute together. There will be a time in the future that you will miss the days that the London Underground was not as busy as it usually is, and you actually get a seat on the train!
This post was written in early December 2020. Please consult the UK government website for the latest coronavirus guidance.