This particular set of tips is useful for both visitors and current residents! Please pass it along to others who might find this useful!
So far in the Olympic tips series: info on tickets, bike info, Park and Rides, a guide to transit staff, where to find real-time transit info online, and transit etiquette. Let me know if I should add anymore!
If you want the latest about transit and traffic during the Games, we’ve got several web and mobile resources where you can look. Almost all will have real-time updates!
Here’s the overview:
- see the transit alerts page (real-time updates, 5:30 a.m. to 1:30 a.m.)
- check the TransLink Twitter account (real-time updates, 5 a.m. to 1 a.m.)
- sign up for alerts via text or e-mail
- look at an interactive Google Map on the TransLink homepage, with the latest transportation issues in the region updated in real-time (it’s called the Games Transportation Alerts System)
- use our RSS feed of road and transit alerts
- try our mobile TransLink site, and travelsmart2010.ca (real-time updates will go here too)
- use the trip planner (it will give you transit alerts for your journey)
- the Buzzer blog (for larger updates mostly)
And here’s a little more about all of them!
The transit alerts page
The alerts page on the TransLink website will be updated as soon as possible by Customer Information, who have increased staff numbers and will be on duty 7 days a week, 5:30 a.m. to 1:30 a.m.
(Customer Information is our call centre run by CMBC, and they handle visitor inquiries, journey planning and other inquiries about the system. Reach them at 604-953-3333.)
The TransLink Twitter account
A whole bunch of staff are taking shifts, and they’ll be receiving info directly from the Transportation Management Centre and other official feeds. (And customers like you, of course!)
You don’t need to have a Twitter account to subscribe – you can just go visit the page and refresh it to see what’s new. Or you can add its RSS feed to your newsreader.
Those with Twitter accounts can of course use their favourite Twitter mobile or web clients to keep track of the updates.
Sign up for alerts via text or e-mail
You can get transit alerts delivered straight to you by text message or e-mail! See this blog post for how to sign up and more.
Interactive Google map on the TransLink website
This is a super exciting tool: TransLink and our key transportation partners will use a Google Map across translink.ca, travelsmart2010.ca, vancouver2010.com, and other partner sites (I hear CBC is on board, and other media outlets too.)
You’ll be able to turn layers of content on and off for 2010 Games venues, entertainment sites, Olympic Lanes, road closures, and alerts for incidents and issues. It will be right on the front of the TransLink site, and TransLink staff will be updating it from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m. every day.
The trip planner
The trip planner has all the Games time reroutes and alerts in it, so if you plan your trip through it, you will get notified about the transportation issues that might affect your journey.
Remember, you can access the trip planner through your smartphone when you’re on the go! Just surf to tripplanning.translink.ca, and the site will recognize that you’re using a mobile device and present you with the mobile version.
RSS feed of road and transit alerts
You don’t even need a special reader or app or anything — just click on the RSS feed link in your smartphone’s mobile browser, and then refresh the page to get the latest updates.
The RSS feed is linked to our traffic and transit alerts map, by the way. Every time the map gets updated with new info, the RSS feed is automatically updated too.
Our mobile TransLink site and travelsmart2010.ca
Our mobile site, m.translink.ca, will be updated with service alerts—staff is planning to be quite vigilant about updating it during the Games.
Visit Travelsmart2010.ca (it has a mobile version!) and you can find out alerts as well. It will be redesigned from its current look to incorporate the Google Map, real-time alerts, and more traffic info.
The Buzzer blog
Well, that’s right here! And to be honest, you should really use the tools listed above for real-time updates — I will be notifying you on the blog if something bigger happens that requires more explanation, or if an ongoing disruption occurs. (There’s a whole staff behind all of the other services on shift all day, and just one of me on the blog.)
Hope this helps! And let us know what you think, as always.