How much of my life will I waste standing in line at the airport? Surely it’s trending towards entire days. One round-trip ticket from Reno to Vegas is only an hour of flying each way. Between the two flights, however, I spent two hours passively rotting alive, of which at least an hour was spent in line at TSA or to board the plane. There has to be a better way, right?
It boggles my mind the amount of hassle required to transit between the two largest cities in Nevada. A road trip is between six to eight hours of driving over mostly emptiness on a one lane road, with only a few sparse reminders of what civilization looks like (if you can call Fernley “civilization”). Flying is fast but also expensive, and requires going through the full airport experience—complete with security checks and showing up two hours ahead of time and whatever additional maladies the airport-deities will smite you with on any given trip. The bus takes 20 hours or more and makes you go through an entirely different state. Last time I was at the bus station, the guy at the ticket booth was talking to a fellow employee mid-transaction about how someone was just stabbed to death on a bus very similar to the one I was about to board. Again, surely there has to be a better way, right?
These issues aren’t even Nevada specific, and anywhere in the country traveling from point A to point B is rife with unnecessary problems. It’s a problem everyone seems completely unmotivated in addressing, and every year when it’s time to travel back for the holidays we all suffer.
Other countries are tackling these problems much better than us. Most of the time, the solution is literally just trains. Be it “bullet-trains” or “hyper-rail,” in other parts of the developed world a train can get whole groups of people across the entire country in a fraction of the time driving takes—and cheaper than an airplane. If the trains aren’t what we want, the TSA should at least be reexamined, or our highways should be improved. I’m not an expert on this, I just know there has to be a better way.
Vincent Rendon can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @VinceSagebrush.