Surviving train travel and public transport with kids during Covid is definitely hair pullingly stressful. More often than not kids will touch, lick and smear their grubby little fingers over everything in sight. For some reason, this urge is only heightened the second public transport is involved.
Pre-Covid, you could just let them get on with it. After all, at the best of times, it’s a challenge keeping them in their seats for the entire journey, let alone trying to keep them from licking the windows too.
Then came Covid and public transport took on a whole new meaning for parents. In other words, we avoid it at all cost, until faced with no other choice or, our husbands refuse to drive.
This weekend we took a trip up to Glasgow, after having put it off for as long as possible. You see, my brother is getting married in September and, after weeks of sending me constant nudges, I finally booked the kilt fittings for the boys.
Against our (my husband’s) better judgement, we decided to drive to Johnston and take the train, figuring it would be easier than navigating the one way system in the City. Having only left our home town for a stay in a lodge last year, I certainly had some preconceptions about surviving train travel and public transport with kids during covid. I was terrified.
Now that we are living in the Covocalypse, setting foot in any highly populated area will increase my anxiety. The thought of public transport, being cramped together in a train, surrounded by strangers, brought on that feeling of panic.
I felt breathless, like someone was squeezing the air out of my lungs. A side effect of this is that I tend to bury my feelings in food; 09:00 on a Saturday morning and the left over Easter chocolate just could not survive my attack. So long diet.
The Journey There
When we arrived at the station, I took the boys across to the platform whilst the hubby bought the tickets. As the train slowly approached, I could see A LOT of people standing through the window.
“It’s a Saturday. “ He said. “It won’t be busy.” He said.
Of course it was busy.
We stood at the door, my arms clutching Pup tightly, trying to support him whilst the train picked up speed. Between you and me, I was also keeping his hands from getting too familiar with anything around us. Finally, someone got off and we were able to squeeze into 2 seats, the boys on our laps. One tip for surviving train travel and public transport with kids during Covid, always keep them close and, if possible, restrain their arms.
The rest of the journey there was uneventful and, we made it up to the fitting and back to the station again in record time.
And Back Again
Running for a train, manipulating ticket gates and managing 2 kids, whilst trying to keep their shoes on, certainly did not bode well for the journey back.
This time round, we were able to snag 4 seats together, a feat that I quickly regretted. With their own seat, the boys had freedom. They had independence. Surprisingly, Pup was awesome! He was so well behaved and just sat talking to us, looking out the window, enjoying the ride.
Then we have Tink! Oh where to start. The more you tell him to stay at peace, the more he feels the need to roll around, half on the floor and half on his seat. He fingered the table, the seats, the window, pretty much anything that was within touching distance. The last thing you should have to yell at an 8 year old in public is, “DON’T LICK THE WINDOW!”
Surviving train travel and public transport with kids during Covid is certainly alcohol inducing. By the end of the journey, I was in need of one massive glass of wine.
We should have driven but, so far, we have survived our first encounter with public transport. Don’t expect me to do it again anytime soon, in the meantime, here are my top tips.
Top Tips for Surviving Train Travel and Public Transport with Kids during Covid
- Don’t forget your masks, anti-bac spray and hand gel
- Buy tickets in advance or, if possible, send the hubby/partner to do the dirty work
- Douse your kids with anti-bac gel at regular intervals
- Restrain your kids, if possible, in a child friendly manner
- If well ventilated and not too many people around, spray everything in sight with anti-bac
- Keep a close eye on your kids choice of footwear, ensure it stays on their feet when running for trains
- Carry/hold on to tightly your child where possible
- Once home, chuck everyone in a hot shower and decontaminate the 💩💩 out of everything
- FINALLY, have a large glass of wine or a double shot of your favourite alcoholic beverage and relax.
Don’t forget, you can also follow us on Facebook to see more day to day fun and frolics.