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#MicroblogMondays 65: Modes of Transportation

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It’s Thanksgiving week in the United States.  Wednesday is one of the busiest travel days of the year over here, though people will be traveling in huge numbers all week.

It is hard to know which mode of transportation has the heaviest volume.  Airports, trains, and roads are all packed.  Traffic, in general, makes my travel anxiety shoot through the roof.

But I would take packed roads over a packed plane or packed train (having experienced all three) any day.  One, the timing of my travel is more flexible in the car.  Two, I can take breaks when I feel my blood pressure soaring.  And three, it is possible to pull off the road for Twizzlers.  If I had to rank them from worst to best, I would say planes, trains, and cars.

At any time of year, what is your least favourite mode of transportation?


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1. Tas IVFer 13. Debbie D. @ The Doglady’s Den 25. Jess
2. One and Done? 14. Laurel Regan @ Alphabet Salad 26. articulation
3. No Baby Ruth 15. apluseffort 27. sharah
4. Persnickety 16. Parul | Happiness & Food 28. deathstar
5. Solo Mama 17. the bespectacled mother 29. No Kidding
6. Failing at Haiku 18. Anks 30. Mali (A Separate Life)
7. Heather 19. Cristy 31. Mary Francis
8. Isabelle 20. Karen 32. Vinitha
9. Raven 21. Muddy Boots and Diamonds 33. Middle Girl
10. Geochick 22. Cynthia Samuels
11. Non Sequitur Chica 23. Loribeth (The Road Less Travelled)
12. Traci York, Writer 24. Kasey


1 TasIVFer { 11.23.15 at 5:57 am }

This is a very hard call! I’ve had some awful train rides – absolutely packed, hot, physically uncomfortable as you’re too squashed to hold your body correctly. Planes are awful – I cannot sleep, the small space, feeling like you’re confined with everyone’s germs. Car you’re at least in your own space, even if it’s a rental. Planes and trains are equal first, cars next.

Happy Thanksgiving. I hope you can have more relaxing than stressful travel or holiday situations.

2 No Baby Ruth { 11.23.15 at 6:48 am }

As long as you mean medium/long-distance trains where everyone has an assigned seat, there’s a meal car, etc., then I would rank them, from worst to best: planes, cars, trains. If it’s a packed commuter train where people are standing and swaying and the like, I’d rank that bottom of all. I can handle 10 hours on a plane if I need to, but 20 minutes of a packed commuter rail car (or subway car) and I need major quiet time to recoup.

3 One and Done? { 11.23.15 at 6:56 am }

As far as Thanksgiving goes my least favorite is the car – as a teacher I could never get off work early so I was always stuck in that crazy traffic going up 95 from Virginia to either NY or MA. Ugh. Even the back roads would be clogged because there is just so much traffic. Under normal circumstances though I didn’t mind driving to visit family for all the reasons you mentioned – pit stops and such. So glad I don’t have to deal with all that this year! Thursday is just a normal day here.

4 Persnickety { 11.23.15 at 7:43 am }

It depends on the destination as well as the country. If going to a large city then I prefer train or plane. If not a place with good transportation- a car. But it also depends on the country. Here in Australia I would take a plane- the trains are either awful or expensive experiences to nowhere. In the US, the trains are slow, but not terrible. In Europe or Japan I might opt for the train above all. Although in Japan the long distance overnight buses were often the best option, cheap and the seats were individual and reclined – kind of like the knight bus without the magic.

5 Heather { 11.23.15 at 9:53 am }

Car, Train, Plane

Mostly because I have more control in a car to get out when I need to even if it’s pulling off to the side of the road. I’m claustrophobic. It doesn’t normally effect me until I feel like I CAN’T remove myself from a situation and I don’t see an end point to this confinement. Sitting on a runway waiting for take off? Ok. Sitting on a runway waiting for takeoff after “traffic has subsided”? I need to close my eyes, take a deep breath, and focus on the fact that I’m not stuck in an airplane.

6 Heather { 11.23.15 at 10:03 am }

Just realized I posted my favorite to least favorite. Car is preferred, then train, then plane is the worst.

7 Isabelle { 11.23.15 at 10:48 am }

I like road trips because it gives the most flexibility and freedom for timing. So cars for shorter rides. Train is great as long as there is no delays. It’s such a unique way to see the country. My least favorite would be plane rides. Very hectic. There is always this worry about going too early or too late, security line being too long, too many people, delays, etc etc.

8 nonsequiturchica { 11.23.15 at 11:01 am }

I don’t mind planes because they can get me far away places much faster than a car. I do wish the train system was better here in the US- the trains in Europe are amazing and can get you anywhere.

9 Geochick { 11.23.15 at 11:15 am }

I haven’t traveled by train since I live in a city that is completely car-driven. (I’m assuming short-packed trips like on a subway or something). Anyway, I guess I dislike traveling by plane and would take a car over a packed airport/plane any day.

Or, stay home.

10 Traci York { 11.23.15 at 11:54 am }

I agree – plane is the absolute worse for me. I think trains and buses (t least, the ones in the Northeast that shuttle back and forth to Boston) would be tied for second place, and car is my favorite.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

11 Debbie D. { 11.23.15 at 12:18 pm }

Plane travel has become less and less pleasant over the years. The thrill of reaching one’s destination is a bit of a buffer. I used to love travelling by train when we lived in Europe, but haven’t used this mode of transportation lately. Road trips are usually ideal, but traffic jams can be frustrating too.

12 Laurel Regan { 11.23.15 at 12:22 pm }

Definitely bus (the inter-city, long distance type). Might be because I was a passenger on one that broke down on the highway and was stranded for ages in the heat of summer… bad memories indeed!

13 apluseffort { 11.23.15 at 12:29 pm }

For me, planes are always the worst because of the fear factor. Notwithstanding the safety statistics blah blah blah!

14 the bespectacled mother { 11.23.15 at 1:29 pm }

My preferred mode of transport is, any day, Air travel. My parents live in delhi which is approx 2 days away by train and just 2 and a half hours away by plane. Travelling by road is absolutely out of question.

15 the bespectacled mother { 11.23.15 at 1:31 pm }

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.

16 anks { 11.23.15 at 1:44 pm }

Well in India, planes are best… roads are terrible so car travel becomes a pain. Literally. Gives me a backache. Trains and stations are generally dirty… so my order is reverse of yours !!

17 fifi { 11.23.15 at 2:03 pm }

Depends on so many things: how long is the journey? Is it from city centre to city centre, or between rural/suburban areas?
I dislike driving, hate the security theatre at the airport, love reading, and appreciate easy access to a bathroom, so trains are by far my favourite. Next best would be a car driven by someone else, followed by plane, and worst is driving myself.
(Although for journeys less than 5 miles, the most fun and freedom comes from my bicycle.)

18 Cristy { 11.23.15 at 2:23 pm }

Definitely plane. Not so much because of the plane itself, but the airports. I imagine train stations would be just as bad.

That said, I find that if I am going to travel, I like doing it in the ween hours of the morning. Less traffic and others to contend with.

19 Catwoman73 { 11.23.15 at 2:33 pm }

I absolutely hate flying. There is nothing worse than being crammed into a tin can with a bunch of strangers, with nowhere to go but DOWN. I hate the lack of control. I suppose you have no control in a train either, but I do love train travel- I love being able to wander around and stretch my legs, and watching the scenery out the window. But I am with you- I definitely prefer to drive if I can. I love the freedom of being behind the wheel. My family and I like to take backroads pretty much everywhere we go- we’ve had some amazing adventures!

20 emma { 11.23.15 at 3:32 pm }

Oh man. I don’t really travel in anything other than a car so I have no idea. But I agree, at least with a car I have the flexibility of stopping if I need to.

21 Cynthia Samuels { 11.23.15 at 3:43 pm }

Honestly, I love ships; hardly relevant but there you are. I think every version is going to be a lot tougher to use now – more security, longer security applications etc. SO sad. Hope all have a safe, happy holiday.

22 Kasey { 11.23.15 at 7:21 pm }

Funny, I would rank the opposite. Worst to Best Cars, Trains, Planes – and if the trip is too short for a plane train over car any day.

23 loribeth { 11.23.15 at 7:50 pm }

They all have their pros & cons, & I’m not sure I favour one more than another. You didn’t mention buses; I used to ride those a lot when I was a kid, although fortunately, most of the trips I made were only a couple of hours long. I don’t think I’d want to travel cross-country on one. I love trains, but in this country, they are not particularly fast and you’re fairly limited as to where you can travel on them. (One main line across the country, plus a few lines connecting Windsor/Toronto/Ottawa/Montreal/Quebec City with more frequent service.) Planes are certainly more crowded and less pleasant than they used to be — and yes, a bit nerve-wracking, especially these days with so many kooks running loose in the world :p — but you can’t beat them for getting you places quickly.

24 Jess { 11.23.15 at 9:01 pm }

Planes. Always planes. I hate air travel. I know that cars are technically the most dangerous, but you can survive a car crash, not so much with a plane crash. I know that’s crazytalk, but it’s where my mind goes! Plus all the airport rushing and early arrivals and downtime… although you can read on a plane, not so much when you’re driving. I do not mind driving at all. No limits on luggage or liquids, and you leave when you want and eat when you want and can pee in a larger bathroom. Sometimes a grosser bathroom, but I’ll take it. I hate planes. Did I say I hate planes? I hate planes.

25 Lori Lavender Luz { 11.23.15 at 9:53 pm }

I think trains (especially) and planes are still a bit exotic to me and tend to mean adventure, so I kind of prefer them to a plain old ordinary car ride.

Happy thanksgiving!

26 Alexicographer { 11.23.15 at 10:45 pm }

Oh, gosh. I certainly cannot stand flying on or near Thanksgiving because — the crowds! the delays! But train travel isn’t practical in the part of the US where I live leaving — cars. That said, I know that cars are by far the least safe option, and that doesn’t amuse me, either.

We mostly limit our travel at this time of year (we’ll be driving about 3 hours to a family member’s house), so car’s really the only option.

27 md { 11.23.15 at 10:52 pm }

it depends on time and destination, and of course the type of car/train. i cannot stand cramped, noisy seating, so a car/train packed with people is out (i live in india, where 10 people in a 7 seater car is the norm, as is people hanging out of trains). i find plane travel quite soothing.. but again, there are always pros and cons..

28 sharah { 11.23.15 at 11:28 pm }

I have never ridden on a train, so I can’t really say. I hate flying – it’s my transportation of last resort – and planes dont go where we actually travel to, so I really only have the option of driving.

29 Parul { 11.24.15 at 5:26 am }

Happy Thanksgiving!
In India, I would say trains. But the trains I have took in NY – I loved that. So hard to pick for sure 🙂

30 Mary Francis { 11.24.15 at 5:27 am }

Bicycle! Used to love it, when hills seemed a whole lot flatter, but that was when I was about fifteen and cycled to school during the summer months. The last bike I bought had one outing then sat in the shed until I could find someone who wanted to take it off my hands. I really didn’t enjoy negotiating traffic, or pushing it up the pitch on the way home!

31 Middle Girl { 11.24.15 at 8:05 am }

I haven’t taken an extended train trip in quite a while, I keep thinking that would be great way to go–but a couple of friends had bad experiences recently, so perhaps not.

My least favorite mode of travel, by far, is plane for a plethora of reasons, not the least of which is the lack of control. And, airports.

32 JustHeather { 11.25.15 at 1:49 am }

I don’t mind, and actually like, all modes of transport, but what I don’t like is when they are stinky (who didn’t wash first?, who farted?, how much perfume did you use? what did you eat?) or there are rude people on there (I thinking of the guy who constantly and purposefully shook my plane seat to the point of me in tears).

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