Thursday, July 4, 2019

1970's Travel vs. Today: How Times & Travel Have Changed

Since the invention of the wheel in 3,500 BC, man has conceived new ways to travel. In just in the past 50 years, we've experienced great changes in how we get from place to place, and thanks to the technological and social advancements since the 1970s, traveling has become more popular, more convenient and much safer. Through consideration of modes of transportation and elements of safety, it is evident how lucky travelers in 2019 are when compared to those in 1970.

Modes of Transportation
In 1970, transportation had an entirely different face from that of travel today. When we think of modes of transport, the airplane is often the first to come to mind, but in 1970, it was the bus that most impressed people. Public transport in U.S. cities was evolving to the delight of many urban workers who could not afford cars. On September 8, 1970, Seattle Transit launched America's first express bus service, "Blue Streak," which later would become the model used to develop park-and-ride routes throughout the country. Three years later, Metro Transit began operation in Seattle charging passengers a 20-cent set fare.

In 2019, rideshares like Lyft and Uber are all the rage. The first Uber ride occurred on July 5, 2010, in San Fransisco and a short nine years later, Uber is completing more than 5.5 million rides every day. These modes of transport are operated by individual car owners and pull straight up to a passenger's location and take them to their intended destination, literally door-to-door service. Surely 1970 bus patrons would envy this option offering a more convenient and personal experience, and would likely enjoy not having to rub elbows with strangers.

Travel Safety
In the 1970s, air travel was considered more enjoyable largely because guests had incredible freedom on board. They could smoke, drink, roam freely about the cabin and TSA had not yet turned check-in into the equivalent of being processed into a Turkish prison. However, the level of safety was completely different than that of today. As 1970 rolled around, US Airlines had reported around six crashes per year, nearly all resulting in multiple fatalities. This was also the time of the rise in hijackings. American travelers also experienced residual dangers when they left home to travel since that era's method of home security was merely a bolt lock to protect their homes. In 1970, burglaries were 1,085 per capita.

In 2019, air travel rights have been severely limited, but passengers have become accustomed to taking off their shoes, walking through metal detectors and the occasional private search by TSA. Though flying may be less enjoyable, it is undoubtedly safer. The last fatal aircraft crash in the U.S. occurred more than 10 years ago, and since 9/11, hijackings have become nearly obsolete. The rate of burglary dipped to 430 per capita in 2017, so now through advancements in safety and technology, travelers can order security camera solutions for their homes online and travel with peace of mind.

Overall, man's traveling methods have come a far way since the invention of the wheel, and farther still in the past 50 years. We have moved from bus lines to Uber apps and party planes to safer flights. As far as convenience and safety go, traveling in 2019 totally tops 2017.

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