Trains in America vs. trains in Europe

When traveling through European cities, one thing that strikes me is how well their transportation is. Particularly their train systems, as they’ve been very helpful when I need to get to the airport/into town. Living in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, I’m used to trains that are devoid of life, they’re usually dirty, slow to reach the destination, and they’re generally nothing to write about. However, when I’ve been in Europe, the opposite has been true-they’ve been spotless, colorful, and very efficient. In Copenhagen, the trains had tv’s to help let you know when to get off, as well as to make the experience lively. Even the compartments themselves were clean; I was shocked at how immaculate and well kept they were. Continuing with the theme of the Danish trains, the people there were extremely friendly and accommodating to us, as having to try to navigate our way to town was a challenge. Our conductor patiently guided us through it, which was more than I can attest to back home. Also, there were plenty of little shops on the platform, which to me was another culture shock; here at home we have to get our morning coffee before we leave in the morning, whereas it’s a whole different story in Denmark. Another place that I was surprised at how efficient the subway system was was in St. Petersburg, Russia. The station was amazingly clean and it was decorated with frescoes. Compare that to the dreary occasional posters we have in the D.C. subway, and this was a shocker. For as large of a city it is (roughly 5 million legal tenants), I’d have honestly thought that it was going to be not as well kept. Both of these two subway systems definitely had better marked arrival points than the one back home, and that made our experience a ton better. Would I want to see the European subway system brought over to the US? Yes, please!

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