Route Planning and Riding Tips

Route Planning and Riding Tips

September 16, 2013

Follow the tips below for a successful trip on public transit.

In person: Friendly and professional transit experts in the Bruin Commuter Services (BCS) lobby can help you design a fast and economical Public Transit route to virtually any L.A. destination.

Online: Connect to Metro's Online Trip Planner, plug in the particulars of your trip and receive detailed maps, fares, schedules and travel instructions. You can also use Google Transit or the trip planner at Go 511.

Phone: Call 1-800-COMMUTE (266-6883). You'll travel through a voicemail menu system and ultimately be connected to specific information for over 40 bus, rail, bicycle and ridesharing agencies. You can also dial 511 from your mobile phone or download Metro's mobile app.


Riding Tips

Most public transit providers operate in the same manner and their services are easy to use if you follow a few simple guidelines.

  1. Make sure you know what bus line you'll be taking. It is quite possible for more than one bus line or service provider to arrive at the stop where you are waiting. Knowing the specific transit provider (e.g., MTA, Santa Monica, Culver City, LADOT) and the route name (e.g., Line 6 Sepulveda Blvd) is important. Be sure to note any special information regarding the route on the schedule, such as express or limited service. If you are unsure about the information shown on the schedule, call 1-(800) COMMUTE.
  2. Have enough cash on hand. Better yet, get BruinGO! and Go Metro transit passes. Most buses require exact change and may require an additional charge when you transfer to another bus or use an express route. Knowing the entire cost of your trip ahead of time will make it much easier when you board the bus. Tokens and passes can be pre-purchased at the UCLA Central Ticket Office.
  3. Hail the bus like you would hail a cab. Don’t assume that the driver will know you are waiting for his or her particular bus. Buses do not automatically stop at all posted locations. It is customary to signal the bus just as you would hail a cab. Once aboard, be sure to let the driver know you want to get off before you arrive at your destination. All buses have a cord or pressure strip you can activate to indicate you want to get off at the next posted stop.
  4. Roll with it. All the preparation in the world can be affected by weather, traffic accidents and other delays. Arrive for your bus at least five minutes before the schedule indicates and be prepared with an alternate plan in case you or the bus is delayed or canceled. If your commute is particularly time sensitive, try riding an earlier bus.