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Saturday, October 19, 2013

20 reasons why you should travel by train

I've said this beforeI love taking the train. But I've also specified the kind of train travel I love - long distances, spanning different states, on my own. After a long hiatus from my train adventure years and years ago, I've been fortunate enough to take the train time and time again in the space of 3 weeks.
I feel like train travel is shamefully underrated, and it's time to revisit this transportation mode. Especially for the urbanites out there, when was the last time you considered the train as a means of getting you to your destination? Meanwhile, in Sabrina city... just seeing photos of trains makes me feel nostalgic for my vacation :S

If you're mulling over your next local getaway and trying to decide between taking the plane and driving, do read on for your third (and possibly best) option ;) Taking the train is fabulous, not only because you're guaranteed to skip stressful traffic jams, but it's also your guaranteed 'me' time. Who wouldn't want to sleep instead of spending those hours getting stiff from driving? Well, all that plus the fact that I can't drive anyhow. LOL.

Last week I took time to write down some of the reasons in my travel journal. Sharing them with you here, let me know if you can think of anything else!

Pic: Thomas Hawk

20 Reasons Why You Should Travel by Train

1 ♥ Cost
2 ♥ No driving! Just sag against the seat, relax and enjoy the scenery
Train travel in 1950s
3 ♥ You can catch up with that book you seem to always be too busy for - reading on trains doesn't make me nauseous unlike in car rides
ktLaurel
4 ♥ You can make all the phone calls you want, and it's legal. Try doing that while driving the car or up in the air.
5 ♥ You can spend quality time bonding with your friend/family member/stranger next to you
My first long-distance train ride in those 3 weeks with a lovely stranger-turned-friend Shazwani Hamid:)
6 ♥ You can use your laptop to play games or watch your fave TV shows/movies.
7 ♥ Bloggers - you can even draft your blog posts or edit a batch of pictures! And all of us can take the time to write in our travel journals ;) And you workaholics can keep working, too. That's three reasons in one bullet point :P
8 ♥ You can use the toilet without having to go to the nearest petrol station/RnR - or in the case of buses, you can use the toilet without having to hold it in until the driver decides to make a stop!
9 ♥ You can eat at the train canteen, or even pack along your own lunch and have a proper sit-down meal with the tray table.
The food canteen in ETS stocked with nasi lemak and nasi goreng
10♥ You're helping to clear up the traffic congestionyay you!
Bridge in Egypt
11♥ No stress from getting yourself stuck in the traffic jam
12♥ You're helping the environment with lower carbon emissions! What an easy way to reduce your carbon footprint.
Carbon emission of electric powered train is the lowest among the three
13♥ Traveling by train is safer than taking the car or bus :)
14♥ A point against taking the plane - no time wasted and fuss going through check-ins and security checks. The train doesn't expect you to get there 2 whole hours early and remove your shoes and jacket and be felt up. Phew. Just head in. All the luggage check-ins and security checks and walking to the gates and the other bells and whistles before you board the plane might take up and even out the time between taking the train and the plane - except in trains, you're just relaxing with a book instead.
 

15♥ You can get up to take a walk along the aisle and stretch your limbs. Ever tried that in the car? Stop, walk along the busy roads in between the honking cars and get back in? Haha
16♥ You won't get lost on the road taking the wrong turn. The train knows how to get you where you want. Keep that GPS away, it deserves a break
17♥ You handle your own baggage. No one throwing them up in the air and tossing them onto a baggage pile, and no long waits at the baggage claim. I'm always nervous about having my bag stolen/damaged otherwise.

The bag sat next to me only because the train was so vacant, I wasn't taking up people's space! It's nice to keep my eyes and hands on my things. 
18♥ It's more comfortable - the leg room is usually more generous, unless you splurge on business class tickets which are infinitely more expensive than train tickets!
19♥ There's more flexibility - you can decide to spontaneously get out at a stop along the way to your destination. And if you miss the train, just get the next one. Compare that with trying to take the next plane out?
Miss the train? Hop on the next one!
20♥ Power outlets FTW!

***

I have so many things to share with all of you, it's crazy. But next up, following the theme of train travel, will be a hopefully informative review on my experience taking the ETS from KL Sentral to Ipoh. When's the last time you took the train? Let me know. And if there's anything else you'd like to add, do leave a comment to share your thoughts! :D


2 comments:

  1. This wonderful post made me nostalgic for those days when I would travel by train to classes. It was a long journey that gave me plenty of time to write my essays on sheets of paper on my knees, read whole books and listen to entire albums of music. I took a train during my last vacation and it was surreal. A train journey lets you feel the pulse of the local people and it's a completely different experience to being in a car, plane or bus. I actually enjoy the the motion of the train wheels underfoot.
    Thanks for this informative and dreamy ode to train travel, Sabrina. It was very sweet.

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