Riding the CTA Bus in Chicago presents its own set of problems year wide, but nothing can be as harsh on public transportation passengers as the winter – and Chicago winters are notoriously brutal. Following are the 5 reasons you’ll hate riding the CTA bus this Chicago winter.
#1 Longer Bus Waiting Times and Delays
Riding the CTA bus in a Chicago Winter requires patience, strength, and a tolerance for cold like no other. Time doesn’t exist on that white, snowy skied, bus stop. You can’t rely on bus schedules (or maps, for that matter) because delays are prone to happen and you won’t be able to rely on your senses due to the white snow laced sky. Even if you could see a light coming through the constant flurry of snow, there’s no telling if it’s really a CTA bus or a bicycle (your mind starts to play tricks on you).
#2 Slower Bus Rides
During Chicago winters, snow fills the sky and covers the ground making it impossible for CTA bus drivers to see their route and difficult for them to stop or slow down without sliding. Also take into account the fact that all walking Chicago natives have boycotted the sidewalk from November- April, and you’ll understand the safety measures CTA bus drivers have to take to get you to your destination – which will definitely slow down your estimated time of arrival (eta).
#3 Snowy Passengers
The Chicago Yeti (also known as any CTA bus passenger in the winter) loves to collect as much snow as humanly possible before boarding the CTA bus. The only thing a Chicago Yeti loves more than hoarding snow all over his/her body, is wiggling wildly and shaking snow all over the place – they love it even more once they’ve successfully surrounded themselves with as many CTA passengers as possible. People from Chicago see absolutely nothing wrong with soaking you with melting snow and grinding against you to get a good seat on the bus. There is snow everywhere on these Chicago Yetis; boots, coats, hats, scarves, bags, even inside the pockets – there are no limits and they insist on sharing.
Slow bus rides, delays, and detours only results in one thing for a CTA bus rider -overcrowding. After waiting 40 minutes for a CTA bus, expect the nearest bus to be overcrowded and leave you with nothing more that splashes of “slush” as you try to thaw out for the next bus. If you’re lucky enough to board the overcrowded express (CTA in the winter) you can peer out the window and laugh as you watch the bus pass disappointed passengers and spray them with “slush” mud. Getting a seat on the CTA isn’t an option in the Chicago winter, and even if you’re lucky enough to snag a seat, you’ll need an umbrella to shield you from the simulated rain created by the standing passengers around you.
#5 Air Conditioning
In the winter the air conditioning on Chicago buses only comes in two temperatures; Hell hot and nonexistent. CTA buses provide a great alternative to exercise for losing weight. If you combine the heat from the air conditioning and factor in the body temperature of the 1,000 Chicago Yetis onboard, you’re almost guaranteed to lose 5 lbs per bus ride. While riding the bus you’ll wonder why you bothered wearing a coat at all – until you get off the bus.