Travel safety tips

The days are shorter now and it’s getting darker earlier and we want to make sure your commute home from class is a safe one. If you get to campus on your bike, by transit, ride sharing or if you drive, we’ve got you covered.

Walking

  • Find a friend to walk with.
  • If you’re walking alone, you can call on our SafeWalk program to have the team walk with you to a transit stop, to wait with you for your cab or ride share, or to your car.  Find more info at http://studentassociation.ca/services/safewalk/.Open New Browser Window
  • Only walk in well-lit areas.
  • Don’t walk and text at the same time, or wear headphones so you’re always aware of what’s going on around you.
  • If possible, avoid carrying too many bags or parcels.
  • If you think you are being followed, switch directions or cross the street and go directly to the nearest area close to a group of people.

Cycling

  • When cycling at night, wear light-coloured clothing or reflective fabric.
  • According to the City of Toronto, cyclists have to use bike lights (white front light and red back light) from half-hour before sunset to half-hour after sunrise.
  • Slow down when crossing over streetcar tracks.

You can find a full list of cycling tips at toronto.caOpen New Browser Window

Driving

When you’re heading to your parked car: 

  • Call our SafeWalk Open New Browser Window team to have them walk with you to your car.
  • Make sure you have your keys ready in your hand. 
  • If you see someone near your car, it’s best that you don’t approach it.
  • Lock the doors once you get inside your car.

Transit 

  • All transit stations have Designated Waiting Areas (DWA). Stand there while you wait for your train or bus. These areas are well-lit and have a direct connection to TTC Staff from an emergency call box, as well as security cameras.
  • When travelling at night, try to take transit with a friend. 
  • If you’re traveling alone on transit, try to sit as close to the driver as possible. This way they can assist you if necessary.
  • Remember to use the TTC Request Stop Service, which allows riders traveling alone between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. to be dropped anywhere between stops. Just ask the driver.

Taxi, Uber and Lyft services

  • Book your ride in advance. It’s always safer than hailing a cab on the street. When the driver arrives, make sure it’s the driver and car you ordered.
  • If you’re riding alone, sit in the backseat.
  • Have your phone at hand so you can follow the driver’s route through a map app.
  • Once you get in the car, locate the taxi driver’s badge and take a picture of it if you can.
  • If you’re chatting with the driver, keep it professional and don’t divulge personal information.
  • Make sure you never take a taxi alone if you’re intoxicated. If possible, try to have someone with you. However, always refuse to share a cab with a stranger.

UBER and Lyft-specific

  • Before you get in the car, check that the license plate, driver photo, and driver name all match what’s listed in the app.
    Uber rides can only be requested through the app, so never get in a car with a driver who claims to be with Uber and offers a ride.
  • Share your trip details with friends or family. 

  1. According to Uber you are able to tap “share status” in the mobile app and share your driver’s name, photo, license plate and location with a friend or family member. They can track your trip without downloading the Uber app.
  2. Lyft users can tap the “Send ETA” icon which will send a text to family and friends with a link to your current route and location.

And finally, always trust your instincts and gut feelings. If something doesn’t feel right, trust it, and take a different course of action. If you are already on the road and are in an emergency situation, please call 911 immediately.