21 August 2017
Commuting in every day was always on the cards for me as I only live down the road from Cambridge, so it would have been a waste of money if I paid to live in halls. I want to share my thoughts on commuting into uni, as it could be the deciding factor between going to uni and not going.
There are both pros and cons to commuting in, but for me the pros definitely outweigh the cons.
Obviously commuting isn’t for everyone. Your day does start earlier than those who live on the doorstep of uni, as they don’t have to worry about getting to the train station, then the train into Cambridge and then walking to the university, all before the lecture starts at 9am.
You can look at this positively though: catching the train can give you down time after being in lectures all day to just sit and chill on the way home, before starting to study again when you get home. Or, it can give you that extra thinking time before uni to get those last minute thoughts and ideas down on paper before your seminar. Also, the train station in Cambridge is only a 15-20 min walk to the university, which isn’t too long, and the walk is quite peaceful.
Commuting in each day can get expensive, depending on how far you are coming from and when you are traveling, but my tip is to get a 16-25 railcard, which can give you a third off your ticket, helping you save more money.
I do wish I had known before I started uni how many other people would also be commuting in. When I first started I thought that I would be the only one not living on campus or in Cambridge, but it turned out about a third of my class were also commuting. It was nice knowing that there were other people who you could catch the train with, as all you hear about uni before you go is how fun it is living in halls, and how much you do compared to those who continue living at home. But the truth is, it is all about how much you put yourself out there, as I had friends who lived in halls but spent most of their time in their rooms away from their flat mates, whereas I would make the time to go round my classmates’ flats after uni to spend time chilling or going out, and then catch the train back in the evenings.