Anonymous asked in Cars & TransportationRail · 1 year ago

What is the point of train passenger travel?

I was wondering what the point of trains and subways are when 1) they cost a lot more money to build and maintain vs. bus transit, 2) once built, their routes inflexible while bus routes can be changed as pleased, and 3) trains and subways are costlier to maintain than buses

Why then are people still advocating for heavy rail when it clearly loses against bus transit?

13 Answers

  • Mike
    Lv 7
    1 year ago
    Favorite Answer

    Economy and speed. The NYC 7 train with 11 cars can carry about 2,000 passengers with a crew of 2. The line can handle 30 trains an hour. When a section of the line was being repaired, the MTA considered suspending train service and using buses. One problem with that idea was they didn't have anywhere near the number of buses that would have been needed.

  • David
    Lv 5
    12 months ago

    A good train system (none exist in N. America) is a joy to travel on. Much more comfortable than buses, much faster, generally the stations are much nicer. You can sleep on the trains, they carry far more passengers, they are more efficient, they are safer. I love traveling on the GTV in France, I despise riding buses.

  • 1 year ago

    Railway electrification has constantly increased in the past decades, and as of 2012, electrified tracks account for nearly one third of total tracks globally.

    Train is cheaper and faster than driving car, truck, buses on the roads, much faster than riding bicycles or horses or bullock carts and trains can carry more goods like even coal and cargo at cheaper rates and reduce road traffic jams and wastage of fuel due to traffic jams and reduce emissions from fuel combustion.

    Train wheels dont puncture unlike the tyres of cars and road vehicles.

    Train journey is land-based alternative to road journey and has all the advantages that land-based journey has to offer against air-based and water-based journeys such as no risk of plane-crash nor risk of drowning in stormy waters.

    Train can carry more passengers than what can be carried by cars, buses and trucks.

    Konkan railways on western coast of india carry trucks filled with heavy goods over large distances. These reduce chance of truck and road accidents and hazards like fires due to fuel leaks or spills from cars and trucks, save gasoline and diesel or natural gas used in combustion engines of cars and trucks driving on the road.

    Trains have facilities like toilets, sleeping berths, pantry car , air-conditioned compartment, police security, etc to make the travel comfortable, secured and continuous till the destination is reached.

  • in many cases and most are up to 500kilometer if you take all the variations, time to airport, wait at airport, wait for luggage, time from airport to the center of the city

    TRAINS ARE FASTER ! , they always arrive to the center of the city, and if you take all the variables, its also cheaper !

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  • zipper
    Lv 6
    1 year ago

    Because in the long run they are more dependable and safer to ride and in many cases get there faster as well.

  • 1 year ago

    We need both. Passenger train costs are low due to large scale. Busses are better only for short distances. Metro rails are essential for overpopulated cities.

  • 1 year ago

    They are faster than buses. Buses get caught in traffic, the same same as cars do, plus they lose more time making stops. And they aren't as fuel-efficient. Trains and subways run on a dedicated right-of-way, sometimes underground or elevated, so they can go faster than cars or buses that are using the regular streets. Also, urban subway systems are usually electric, so they make less air pollution than cars or diesel-powered buses (electric and natural gas-powered buses are not as bad). (There are a few buses with special roads built just for the buses, which do make provide somewhat faster transportation than regular buses, but they have the same problems you mention for rail: high costs, inflexible routing, etc.)

  • JetDoc
    Lv 7
    1 year ago

    Look at the operating cost per passenger mile for trains, as opposed to buses. Amtrak can move 100's of people long distances for much less than it costs to move 40 people on a bus.

  • Anonymous
    1 year ago

    Obviously, you have never lived in a large city. Try taking a bus from Scarborough Ontario to downtown Toronto. You would have to take several buses, several transfers and it would take 4 or 5 hours versus the 1.5 hours that it would take to take one or two buses to Yonge Street and take the subway all the way downtown - where the jobs are.

  • 1 year ago

    I'm a big fan of integrated transportation systems. In my home town, the bus service will pick you up at a stop, but carry you to the city center to catch a bus that will deposit you at your destination. This is OK if your destination is on a line that makes it a straight shot, but if your destination is 20° from your route, you can ride twelve or fifteen miles to reach a destination ten miles away.

    I spend a good bit of time in Paris, and their transportation system is integrated. The same company provides metro (subway), bus and train services (SCNF). The support this with a smart phone app that tells you which mode and line to take if you enter your current location and destination. As an additional benefit, I walk two to four thousand extra steps when there.

    To summarize, Subways reduce traffic congestion, but the key to efficiency is route planning. With a grid bus system and a subway that has interchange points, you can get from any place in town to any destination. Both buses and subways when integrated result in easy access to public transportation, and I would argue are a public health benefit.

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