News / Published on Nov 3, 2023

4 tips to fall back and plan ahead

Be prepared, be seen, be dressed for the elements.

A man waits for a Community Transit bus at Mariner Park & Ride. It is a dark fall morning.The annual end of Daylight Savings Time gives back a welcomed hour once each year. In Snohomish County, it also brings more hours of darkness and colder temps. For transit riders, this requires a little extra planning.

While Swift buses stop at every station, other buses stop only as requested by people onboard or when drivers see someone waiting at a bus stop. This time of year, bus riders need to be more visible to make sure they are seen in time. 

Here are four tips to create your best experience.

Know when to expect your bus
Transit service has gone high-tech. In addition to apps, there are online tools like Plan My Trip and Find My Bus on the Community Transit website that can help you plan your trip and learn when to be at your bus stop. The Swift stations display how many minutes until the next bus arrives.

Young woman demonstrates how to use a mobile phone to signal a bus to stop

Make sure you are seen
It’s cold, dark, and often raining during the fall and winter months. As your bus approaches, make yourself seen. Stand where the bus driver will notice you and hold a flashlight or your cell phone with the screen lit up where it’s visible to an approaching bus. Wear light colors or reflectors to be more visible.

Dress to stay warm and dry
Consider wearing boots, a coat, and bringing an umbrella. These are a few things that can keep you warm and dry while waiting for your bus.

Keep what you need within reach
Whether it’s in a coat pocket, wallet, or a small pack or purse, find a way to keep the things you need within reach. This could include your ORCA card, printed ticket or exact change, your cell phone, a flashlight, or keys. Prevent the delay, inconvenience, or dangers of searching through large bags in a public area by keeping the things you need close at hand.

The changing seasons can be charming in the Pacific Northwest. These four tips can help ensure your commute is safe, comfortable, and convenient at this time.