Public Transportation Pros and Cons

Written by laura leiva
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Public Transportation Pros and Cons
Public transportation cuts down on traffic. (Thomas Northcut/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Depending on whom you ask, people either love public transportation or they hate it. There are plenty of pros and cons when it comes to leaving your car at home and taking the bus or train to work or school, it all depends on what is valuable to you and your time.

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There are various types of public transportation to help you get around the city, or even across the county. Public transportation is anything from the bus to a train like Amtrak or even cable cars, like the ones in San Francisco. One major pro to using public transportation is that it is available to anyone and everyone. A downside is that during certain times of the day, public transportation can be overcrowded. On a typical weekday, people board public modes of public transportation 35 million times, according to Public Transportation Takes Us There.


Public transportation gives people of all economic means a chance to get around town to run important errands like picking up groceries at the store or visiting the doctor. Public transportation also helps teens and young adults who can't afford cars to get to work or class throughout the day. A downside of public transportation is the need to design your schedule around that of the bus or train. When a bus arrives at a station or makes various stops on the route can have a direct impact on whether you get where you need to be on time.


Owning a car can become quite expensive when you factor in the monthly payment, insurance, maintenance and gas. A pro of using public transportation is that you save money annually by not owning a car. A household that uses public transportation instead of a car saves approximately £5,460 annually, according to Public Transportation Takes Us There. A con to not owning a car and using public transportation is that you depend on a bus or train to get you where you need to go and don't have the convenience of doing it on your own time.

Environmental Impact

Leaving just one car at home and using public transportation reduces the impact on the environment. A pro of using public transportation is there is less gas consumed annually, which also saves you money. Taking public transportation reduces the carbon footprint from people, which then reduces harmful emissions in the air and lowers the amount of greenhouse gasses released into the atmosphere. A con of public transportation is that when not enough people use it, there are still hundreds of cars on the road as well as buses that emit exhaust simultaneously and cause traffic.

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