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Six Months Later – My Caltrain Experience

Time really does fly, it’s march already. I got a job back in September that required me to commute from Santa Clara to San Francisco. The only other alternative besides driving is to take Caltrain. It’s been six months, and I am ready to share my experience.

The Good

Caltrain is almost always on time unless something really drastic (death on tracks) happens. It is reliable and affordable compared to driving to San Francisco. Trains are reasonably well maintained, and conductors are friendly.

Caltrain no longer accepts paper monthly passes and 8-ride tickets. It’s been replaced with Clipper Card. I get my monthly pass order automatically loaded onto the Clipper card and don’t need to tag on and off. No Hassle commute…

The Bad

There is no WiFi on board Caltrain. My commute time is one hour, which means time to surf the web. Even though I have a 4G phone, AT&T’s coverage is spotty in some areas that Caltrain goes through.

Train timings don’t sometimes make sense. I have to catch Caltrain from Sunnyvale in the morning because of the timing difference. Not all trains make all stops. Especially the bullet train in the morning from Mountain View that makes very few stops. Finding parking at the mountain view station after 7:40 am is impossible.