So I had to take the bus to work as I sold my car....hmph...it meant waking up early (no I admit it I am not a morning person). The only thing you get to do on a bus at that time of the morning is think and well I guess I ended up thinking about transportation and how it makes a difference when you go travelling around the world. The easier it is to use public transportation the better the holiday to put it simply. Especially for the likes of us who like to do it 'our way'. Well that is my own personal opinion anyway and that is after serious 6am meditation on the topic!
Recently in Roratonga everything seemed to be connected somehow, you never had to go anywhere else to rent a car or a scooter or a bicycle, they were pretty much on your doorstep. Nice and easy is what I call it. Then if you don't fancy driving yourself there is the hourly local bus. Granted the island is small which does give it a bit of an advantage! My own island of Jamaica is a bit more harder to get around and I think this makes a real difference to how the country is experienced. In some ways that is probably how the government likes it, a way of protecting it's biggest earner. Keep the tourists locked 'safe' in their hotels. I personally have never taken public transport in Jamaica. Jamaica isn't exactly access all areas anyway.
Now as for Europe well it is renowned for how easy it is to get around and in many ways the Europeans take it for granted. You have got planes, trains, buses and automobiles all on your doorstep. In some places you have the tube and in others you also have a tram. Sometimes it's actually easier to take a plane than a train or bus! Admittedly their can be language barriers and it's not until you are on the train that you realise you needed to actually validate the ticket (it only happended to me once a long time ago). Then don't you just love the open double decker buses in the major cities that take you rather conveniently to all the major sights. I personally actually enjoy the excuse to take these sometimes. In Glasgow you get to hear some really good stories from the guides...I'm being serious. Scotland in some places makes it a bit complicated by asking for exact fares on the bus! Trust me infuriating even if you are not a tourist!
As for the US of A well I guess if you don't rent a car you are not going anywhere far unless you are in one of these cities you can manouvre yourself around. Probably an easier and more popular option to get around New Zealand as well but there are several options of big buses to get you around as well. The local buses in Auckland can be a bit of pain but only if you are like us staying here for an extended period as they have about 100 different independant buses doing their own thing! Thankfully though they have a really good website to explain it all to you MAXX !!
Personally we prefer to have a car to get around and we drive and we drive and we drive.....