Walking to work, college or school – or wherever else you’re going locally, is one of the best ways of getting fresh air, lifting your mood, saving money, burning a few calories, strengthen your bones and it’s good for the environment.
For help in choosing the shortest route from A to B covering most built-up areas, you can use the Journey Planner. There may be other slightly longer but more pleasant routes, so if you’re making the same journey on a regular basis, experiment with alternatives.
Which journeys are best for walking?
- Journeys to work or school – if work is close enough to where you live. Unlike driving, walking times are very consistent and reliable.
- On business – traffic can be unpredictably bad at any time of the working day – if you’re out and about on business or meetings relatively close to work it can make a lot of sense, and save time, to walk when you can instead.
- To a rail station or bus stop.
- To local shops – for taking “top up” shopping home – and you don’t have any of the stresses of car parking.
- To parks or sports facilities – it’s great to get out for some fresh air and exercise but having to drive there defeats the purpose. Try walking instead – maybe with friends or family.
- Visiting friends – you don’t need to worry about getting taxis or lifts home To cinemas or for a meal – again no need to worry about taxis or lifts home and no parking worries either.
For information on pedestrian safety please refer to the Road Safety Authority.
What about the rain?
So – it rains sometimes, but before you jump in the car on a rainy day – everyone else has the same idea and the traffic will be even worse than usual. Get a decent rain/wind top or umbrella and check the weather forecasts for the days when you might get caught in a shower or worse. Of course if you’re worried about a particularly wet day perhaps it’s a day for the bus.
What about cold weather?
Gloves and a scarf are of course useful on particularly cold mornings. Other than that, cold crisp fresh air makes walking really fun – a break from the artificial environment of centrally heated homes, air conditioned cars and heated workplaces. And since you are moving you’re generating your own heat.