10 MRT Hacks That Will Make Your Life Easier

Win the battle for space and comfort!

 

(SPOT.ph) We've advised you before to take advantage of Stored Value Cards, but there's more to the MRT than just dodging things and holding crazy positions. It's actually a public utility vehicle that can work to your advantage—if you know what to do. Let us clue you in. 

 

Also read:

Ang MRT parang pag-ibig...
Pop Quiz: What delayed the MRT at Cubao station last night?
10 Things Only People Who Regularly Ride the MRT Would Know
DO THIS, NOT THAT: The MRT Rush Hour Edition
SPOT.ph’s Streetsmart Guide: The MRT Survival Manual
10 People Who Should be Banned From Public Transportation

 

 

Don't wear slippers. 

People will step on you, which means exposing your toes is just a terrible, terrible idea. The smart regular commuter knows that the first line of defense against a bad day is proper footwear. Sneakers have great grip, so those are always recommended. Consider investing in boots.

 

 

Bring an umbrella or walking stick. 

There's a noticeable scarcity in hand rails, so consider a walking stick. You can also opt for a standard-issue umbrella; the point is to have something to help you brace for both scheduled and sudden stops. Umbrellas look a bit strange especially in the summer (though it must be said that it's always a good idea to have one on your person), while a walking stick (P88 at Daiso) makes you look a bit dapper. It's also good for self-defense. 

 

 

 

Queue for the middle cart.

People always dash for the first cart and we'll assume there's some crisis happening in their life so let's give them that space. The farthest cart is for people who really need seats (like the elderly and pregnant women), so it's best to leave them alone. The middle cart is this amazing place where people can go left and right. People can go further and further in, giving more and more space for everyone else...ideally. The bonus hack here is to not go ballistic on the person who just stops in front of the door. It can only lead to sad, viral videos

 

 

 

Always go as far in as you can.

That's what she said. Now that that's over with: There's really very little benefit in staying near the door. The fear of the door closing before you can get off at your stop is unfounded: You will get out. Staying near the door will only lead to bruises and a lot of people wishing you ill. It's more comfortable inside the cart and you can rest easy knowing that you're not wearing your bum as a bowler, if you catch our drift. (Not to be morbid, but if you were near the door and it suddenly popped open—you'd be the first to go.)

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Hold your phone and card to your chest.

This saves you a lot of time worrying where you stuffed your card and this means you always know where your phone is, because it's right there next to your heart. Hold it tight, never let go. Putting it in your pocket makes it easier for people to fish it out when things get crowded. 

 

 

 

Don't be afraid of the male cart.

Granted, there's the occasional disgusting groper and that really shouldn't happen (and it's definitely not okay)—but the probability of getting shoved is curiously less if you're a female stepping into a male cart. Chivalry is not extinct, apparently. 

 

 

Shoulder bag over backpacks

You'll go through bag inspection much quicker if you're not clumsily trying to swing and unzip your package for the guard. This also makes you a better person, who knows that holding up the line gets you failing marks in the GMRC of life. Applies to malls also. On a separate note, they really should just not do this anymore. Extra tip: Hold the bag in front of you and use it to protect yourself from being crushed by the crowd (without taking up too much space). 

 

 

 

Take the stairs!

Admittedly, not all of the escalators are functioning. However, it's a fact that no matter how daunting it seems to climb the stairs from the Ayala Station platform to the lobby, it's actually much, much faster than being...er, ferried by technology. It's also great cardio. Applies to all situations where you have to choose between stairs and escalators. 

 

 

 

Wear a hat with a brim

Not only will it protect your face from the sun, it will also protect you from whiplash—from those damn people who think they're in a shampoo commercial. The protection isn't 100% and a couple of strands will still hit you, but the hat at least affords you a bit of necessary breathing space. (Especially if you're short. It's a little reminder for people that you're there.)

 

 

 

Scarves, ropes and ribbons!

They're pretty. You can use them to tie your hair up and you can do a lark's head knot on the railing or even the pole, so you have something to hold while you're in transit. 

 

Also read:

Ang MRT parang pag-ibig...
Pop Quiz: What delayed the MRT at Cubao station last night?
10 Things Only People Who Regularly Ride the MRT Would Know
10 Awkward MRT Positions, Usually Seen During Rush Hour
DO THIS, NOT THAT: The MRT Rush Hour Edition
SPOT.ph’s Streetsmart Guide: The MRT Survival Manual
10 People Who Should be Banned From Public Transportation

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Photos from the MRT Website, megacities-go-services.com, nodulous.wordpress.comand stock product shots. Cover art by Warren Espejo.

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