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One of the joys of coming to university is getting there.
(Please note I say this with the most sarcastic of intentions possible.)

Before setting foot on the hallowed grounds of Usyd, I actually came from a small country town with not very many people living there. My family lived on a farm half an hour out of town and, needless to say, public transport was non-existent. So when I moved to Sydney, I was at first excited by the glamorous prospect of commuting, bussing and travelling on the likes of CityRail every day.

Whilst I am all for public transport for environmental reasons, I have been known at times (such as in pouring rain or late at night) to curse my lack of a car. But the fact remains that in the secret world of students, sky-rocketing petrol prices and our frugal methods will continue to mean that public transport represents independence, and importantly, a cheap ride!

The choices are many and varied, but here is a quick review of the perks and pitfalls of making the trip to uni without a car:

The thing I love most about the bus is that it almost always offers a scenic route, even if the people might sometimes be less than friendly. My personal favourite bus to take to uni is the 370. The 370 goes from Leichhardt to Coogee and drops you off on City Road, in between the Darlington and Camperdown campuses. If you catch it at the Leichhardt end, it takes you through the back streets of Annandale, Glebe and Newtown to get to uni. Definitely the least stressful way to start your day! The downside? It is notoriously late and takes so many backstreets that it takes twice as long to get there. But still, a far better option than the stressful glares you can get on any of the main bus routes.

The train is probably the quickest option if you live further away. You skip the annoying bus passengers who insist on getting on and off at every stop, and you will nearly always get a seat. In my experience, trains still seem to be generally more reliable than buses, but when they’re out of order, that’s all there is to it. And that might not be what you want to hear when you’re already running late for a class presentation.

(or, as my friend suggested, skateboarding: I maintain they still get you there in about the same amount of time.)
If you live on campus, or you are lucky enough to have landed a place in Glebe or Newtown, walking is a great option. If you can walk quickly, it is better still. The most important thing to remember about walking is that you’ll probably end up needing a backpack, because over-sized handbags just don’t cut it when you’re walking from one end of Glebe Point Road up to uni. And you’ll need comfy shoes.

If you’re brave enough to share the road with some pretty nasty car drivers, cycling can offer one of the cheapest and quickest ways of getting to uni. Obviously you still really have to live in the Inner West for it to be an appropriate option, but the area around the uni has quite a lot of bicycle lanes, which make it much easier!

Okay, enough said. If you are lucky enough to catch the ferry on your way to uni, you already know that the rest of us are jealous, jealous, jealous. So it takes you half an hour extra because ferries are slow? I don’t care - you get to travel by boat. End of argument.


Ah, I like to spice up my week by taking the bus OR the train given that I live smack in between a station and a bus stop. AND of course, how can anyone deny themselves the joys of catching public transport to uni - you get to listen to some music and do your readings on the go, whereas if you drive you have to look at the road...

Hi Jess,

I'm in year 12 and I'm considering Arts (media and communications) for next year, and i was wondering what it's like, I'm not necessarily interested specifically in areas like journalism or advertising, but i know I'll go in to arts of some kind, and media and communications seems to have a bit more direction, but still lets me do humanities subjects too.

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Everything you ever wanted to know about uni but were too afraid to ask....