Breathing fresh air, being physically active, and avoiding excessive stress are a few of the well-known steps toward living a healthy life style.
While seemingly simple concepts, the latest obesity figures in the U.S. indicate that many people are still finding it difficult to achieve those goals. When it comes to weight management, the latest diet plan or a gym membership come to mind. Yet, an easy way to stay fit may be just around the corner from your home or workplace: public transportation.
The Victoria Policy Institute and The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) explored the health impacts of transit, and among other benefits, they found that individuals who use public transportation get over three times the amount of physical activity per day than those who don’t (approximately 19 minutes, rather than six minutes) by walking to bus stops and final destinations. The U.S. Center for Disease Control recommends 22 minutes of moderate physical activity, such as brisk walking, per day.
While using public transportation can benefit your waistline, it won’t leave your wallet starving for cash. Public transportation is relatively inexpensive when compared to the cost of owning a car and paying for gas. According to APTA’s national Transit Savings Report from September 2017, individuals who ride public transportation instead of driving can save, on average, more than $829 per month. That translates to an average annual savings of $9,946 for a person who switches his or her daily commute from driving to riding transit.
South Florida is no exception – there are many benefits to using public transportation in urban areas such as Miami-Dade County, where several mass transit options are available.
Miami-Dade County offers the convenience of riding Metrorail, a fast and easy to use above ground rail system that can take you from the Miami International Airport (MIA) to the Dadeland area in South Dade in about 45 minutes – significantly less time than making the same trip by car during rush hour. Metromover, a fully automated people mover system connects Downtown Miami to the booming Brickell area and Miami’s financial district. The best part is that Metromover is free for all riders.
Supplementing Metrorail and Metromover is the County’s Metrobus system with a fleet of more 750 buses. All three transportation modes are managed by the County’s Department of Transportation and Public Works (DTPW).
Besides saving money at the pump, Miami-Dade commuters can also save some extra cash through the various discount programs that Miami-Dade Transit offers to its customers.
K-12 and college students, seniors, veterans, and even corporate employees can take advantage of free or discounted fare. Riders can also take advantage of EASY Perks, a nationally recognized and award-winning discount program that’s available to those that have a transit EASY Card or Ticket.
In the end, the choice is clear. Why drive when taking transit offers many benefits to your waistline and wallet? Make the switch and join the millions of people across the country who are already using public transportation.
For more information on Miami-Dade Transit services or to download their free apps, please visit www.miamidade.gov/transit. For customer service, please call 311.
Above content provided by Miami-Dade Department of Transportation