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Old Dec 6, 19, 6:27 am
FlyerTalk Evangelist
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Shanghai
Posts: 33,901
Subway (mass transit) systems

There are many threads about subway systems and stations in various FT destination forums, but think a universal thread could be potentially useful. I say "potentially useful" because this topic is admittedly quite broad. In order to slightly offset this, I suggest that we attempt to use city names (instead of 3-letter airport codes) in our posts.

I'm using a template with specific points to get the ball rolling. Others are free to either use it if they like.

What is your favorite subway system, and why?
Washington DC is my favorite because it's usually possible to get seats, the stations are convenient (apart from no Georgetown), and transfers are well designed. Hong Kong is a close second.

What are some of the most enormous subway stations that you know of? How do you deal with them.
People's Square here in Shanghai is the largest (~20 exits) subway station I've ever experienced. And, when I was in Nanning two weeks ago, I learned that they have underground malls that bridge multiple stations. After knowing about such places, I typically put them on the "don't transfer there" list. That having been said, some transfers work better than others, even at big stations.

What is your favorite airport for subway access to the downtown area it serves?
PDX gets my vote on this point. Sure, the Max isn't super fast, but it is cheap, and actually goes through the heart of the city. I also like the Silver Line in Boston because it is free, and provides access to the entire T network

Do you have any general tips to offer on the systems you know best?
In Shanghai, avoid Line 2 during anytime close to rush hour. The same goes for Lines 10 and 1 in Beijing.

What's your protocol for identifying optimal station exits?
Google Maps is typically my initial weapon of choice for this mission, but when I'm hauling luggage, I take 2 minutes to do more research (often on the transit company websites themselves). After I experience a station, I simply take a picture of the station map, and save it to my phone.

Last edited by moondog; Dec 8, 19 at 3:35 pm
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