We’re already halfway through 2020, and the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc on our daily lives. In Los Angeles, many local businesses have been able to reopen and employees were allowed to report back to their offices since early May. The City, however, continues to warn residents that the risk of catching the virus remains high. It also continues to enforce the Safer L.A. order, which encourages people to stay at home except when doing essential activities like buying groceries or going to work or the hospital.
Sadly, not all of us are fortunate to have a car during these trying times. But on the bright side, public transportation is still open and accessible for all. This is more important than not having any options for mobility and transport at all.
If you are among L.A.’s car-less residents, here are your options for getting around the city.
Uber and Lyft
Remember when the worst of commuters’ worries is getting into an accident while ride-sharing and finding a seasoned lawyer for Uber and Lyft accidents? Those days feel like a lifetime ago. Now, people are more frightened of the possibility of riding a car that’s just been vacated by an asymptomatic COVID-19 patient. But desperate times call for drastic measures, and one of those measures is keeping these services open to the public.
Uber and Lyft are still allowed to provide ride-hailing services in L.A. Nevertheless, their drivers are required to strictly follow the preventive measures mandated for public transportation in the city (e.g., cleaning vehicle interiors with disinfectant every day). If you need to travel far within the city, ride-hailing will be your most convenient and safest option.
The guidelines for taxis are the same as the mandates on ride-hailing services. Taxi drivers are ordered to keep their vehicles clean and disinfected, preferably several times a day. Many taxi drivers go out of their way and provide hand sanitizers for their customers to use, upon entering their vehicles, too.
When commuting in L.A., taxis are still a great option if you don’t mind paying according to the meter.
Trains and Buses
The Metro and several bus operators in the city also remain operational, but at a lower capacity. Some bus routes, for example, have fewer trips now. They’ve also limited the number of people who might ride on one bus to comply with the public health directive on social distancing. Health officials encourage everyone to stay at least 6 feet apart from one another to prevent virus transmission.
Given the limited trips and seating for trains and buses, you need to plan your commute carefully and set off early so that you’re sure to catch a ride. It’s worth preparing for these trips if you want to save by keeping your commute and transportation expenses to a minimum.
Bikes and Scooters
Don’t have a car yet too paranoid about riding in both ride-hailing and public vehicles? Bicycles and electric scooters are the next best things you can have. They are very convenient when you need to go somewhere near. Unfortunately, they’re of little help if you’re carrying several bags of groceries or transporting heavy boxes even over short distances.
Bear in mind that Los Angeles is still unable to contain the local transmission of COVID-19. Take care and be vigilant when getting around the city via any of these transport options.