There are many pros and cons to taking public transportation to class, but many of us can agree that the biggest benefit is not having to park on campus. The biggest drawback, however, is that public transportation isn’t always fun. If you find yourself sitting awkwardly on the bus just waiting for the ride to be over, try some of these activities to make it go by a little faster.

Use Headphones 

Headphones will give you the option to listen to a podcast, audiobook or a playlist of your favorite songs. This way you can start the morning by focusing on something you enjoy. It also usually discourages strangers from talking to you.

Read a Book 

If you are one of those people who can read in a moving vehicle, embrace it. Reading is a fun way to jump-start your brain before class or just make your morning better, so bring a book and read for fun on your commute.

Do Homework

From English to economics, professors are almost always assigning homework. Do some of your required reading on the bus, take the time to double check those math problems you were feeling iffy about or think over how you want to phrase a presentation or paper due soon. Riding the bus or train is the perfect opportunity for multitasking, and doing homework during your commute means you have more time for doing the things you actually want to do later.

Try People-Watching

Take a look at the people around you on the bus or train. Even if you aren’t looking to start a conversation, there is always a diverse group of people taking advantage of public transportation. Create a life story for another passenger — the story is just for you, so it doesn’t have to be real or even plausible. The guy in the nice suit and bright red converse could be an ex-spy with a pension for practical footwear, or he just really needs to buy better interview shoes.

Practice a New Skill

Most people like to fiddle with something while they’re idle. The bus or train is the perfect place to try picking up origami, knitting or crochet. These art forms don’t require too many supplies — some paper, knitting needles, crochet hook and yarn — and there’s a lot of information on how to get started in books or online. You’ll also be able to wear your creations or give them away as gifts.

Learn a Language

If you’re working on a Bachelor of Arts degree, chances are you’ve got a language requirement. Take some time during your bus or train ride to go over what you can remember for class or practice learning new words. There are many free apps you can use to study or learn things you probably won’t get to in class.


Picture different and positive ways your day could pan out. Think of things you’d like to do, books you’d like to read or imagine how the next episode of your favorite show is going to go. Space out and enjoy your own little world for a moment. Look at cool art as it passes by outside, watch the things people are doing next to you or note the interesting clothes your fellow passengers are wearing.

Beat bus ride boredom by appreciating the little things that make you happy in the morning or by discovering what those things are.


Jaycen Eggleston
Jaycen Eggleston is an English major who makes a mean macchiato and is interning at the Arts Desk.


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