Metrorail or Uber?

An interesting aspect of D.C. life is the planning involved in making a trip to another part of the city. The goal is to get to one’s destination without the trip taking too long, but there is also a concern that the journey be cost-effective.

Ginger Moored and Jeffrey Wilkins worked on a post, “Metrorail vs. Uber: Travel Time and Cost,” published on District, Measured, a website that contains posts from the District of Columbia’s Office of Revenue Analysis. The post addresses a topic that you might have thought about, but might not have said out loud: the comparison between Metro trains and Uber cars as a means of transportation.

While there is an admission that the analysis is limited, it does bring into the open the idea that in different circumstances, Metrorail is a better option than Uber, and vice versa. During rush hour, Metrorail seems like a great option, because trains arrive along the platform very frequently. However, rush-hour fares can make the commute cost a pretty penny.

It can also happen that a Metrorail trip isn’t very efficient, even during rush hour. When time is pressing and the train is stuck at a station for more than 15 minutes, leaving the train and taking an Uber makes sense.

Taking an Uber, though, even when doing an uberPOOL, can be costly. Oftentimes, Uber drivers know their way around and the costs don’t seem prohibitive. It is possible, though, for the driver to be lost and to find your fare cost more than double.

Choosing the best transportation option is not an exact science. It’s all about strategizing. Of course, driving your own vehicle is always an option.


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