Whether you drive, walk, bike, or rely on public transportation, it’s probably pretty safe to say that most people living in the Northeast are not exactly thrilled with the prospect of tackling that daily commute during the frosty winter months. Let’s face it: With dipping temperatures, the seemingly constant threat of yet another storm always looming, and the inevitable traffic delays, there is nary a silver lining to be found. But, at the end of the day, that daily trek is a necessary evil, so we’ve rounded up some of our top winter commuting tips for New Jersey renters in the hopes that they’ll at least help to ease the pain.
Find an alternate route
This tip works for drivers, walkers, and bikers. Chances are when the roads are of a certain wintry condition, your normal route is going to be a bit of a mess. Find back roads with less traffic and, though it may include more miles, you’ll circumvent that mess. Walkers and bikers are likely to be a little safer steering clear of major roads as well, as accidents are more likely to occur.
Invest in snow tires.
Nobody wants to voluntarily tack on any added expenses (ever), especially for something that’s only necessary for a couple of months a year, but trust us: There’s a reason these things exist. When you’re finding alternate routes to get to work just a little bit faster, you’ll be happy to have tires that are designed specifically for this type of driving.
If your commute is anything other than a personal vehicle, take extra measures to assure you’re bundled up properly. You want to be prepared for anything, like a sudden drop in temperatures or a behind-schedule bus that leaves you waiting for significantly longer than anticipated.
Check that public transportation map
If you’re about ready to move into a new apartment and you’ll be relying on the bus or train to get around, make sure there’s a stop or two close to your new home. You may not think it’s a big deal walking a mile at the beginning and end of your day, but there’s a huge difference between walking a mile on a spring afternoon and doing the same during a winter storm.
Look for storage
Riding your bike in the winter has its own set of hazards, from the increased potential of falling to uncleared paths to any drivers not taking things easy on the road. But if that’s your preferred mode of transportation, at least make sure the apartment community you move into has somewhere (ideally indoors) you can store your bike safely. You don’t want to find yourself shoveling your bike out of a major snowdrift every time it snows.
Following just a few of these winter commuting tips for New Jersey renters can help to improve your whole experience while coping with the less-than-pleasant weather we all have to suffer through this time of year. Before you know it, the spring thaw will begin and we can all forget about it … until next winter.