Originally Posted by jrayn
I have a wagon, the kind you pull kids in, I would strap my 2 toddlers into their car seats and sit each car seat into the wagon and pull them to the bus stop, if the bus doesn't have wheelchair access things then I would ask the driver to help me lift the wagon/kids into the bus and I would hold the wagon in the aisle while we drove to the store.
Once we were in teh store I would ask a cashier or someone to keep the wagon and car seats behind the counter until I was finished shopping.
When done shopping and the car/taxi comes, I would put the wagon in the trunk and strap the seats in.
Last week I saw a mum with a full-size stroller on a streetcar during rush hour. She had the stroller pulled as close into her seat as possible, but was being harassed by the driver that she was clogging up the streetcar. I let her know that she had as much right to use public transit as anyone.
A coworker taking her DD (an infant) to daycare so she could go to work. Another passenger kindly suggested that she might want to wait til after rush hour to use the transit system with her child.
Suggesting that families have less right to public transit than others during peak periods works my last nerve. And it may not come down to "planning". When you need to travel, you need to travel. Perhaps you're on your way to work/daycare. Perhaps you're going to a doctor's appt. I'm not going to keep my kid out wherever we are extra long just so others are not inconvenienced.
While a lot of the routes in our city do have WC accessible "kneeling" buses, a lot don't. There has been many a time when I've wheeled my stroller up to the kneeling bus and the driver can't even be bothered to put it down (the push of a button from his seat). Some drivers (or other passengers) willingly offer to help you get your stroller on board, but many don't. I've even heard drivers say that they are not "allowed" to leave their seats (yah, unless its to stop the bus and get coffee and a donut at Timmy Ho's).
I've got pretty good mommy muscles and a very lightweight stroller (12 lb Mac) AND a petite kid. In a pinch, I can lift my stroller on my own onto a bus. I have yet to see how ANY stroller can get onto a streetcar with just one person - the doors are just too narrow. But perhaps I have just never figured this one out. I have conciously avoided riding on streetcars with the stroller, we mainly stick to the subway system. We chose our neighborhood and house because they are 2 blocks from the subway, in an area that we could afford.
We do usually ride during rush hour, to and from work/daycare. We can usually find at least a seat for DD - many people will kindly give up a seat to her (she's 4). But a few weeks ago, it was packed, and no one did. The car stopped very suddenly, and a 300+lb man almost landed on top of her.
To me, this thread has been partly about trying to raise awareness that there are challenges for families who don't live in the burbs with their own vehicle in the garage and installed car seats. So I'm just adding my own public transit experiences here.