ACS class opens public transportation doors to newcomers
February 23, 2014
CAMP HUMPHREYS -- Each month, Army Community Service here offers newcomers an opportunity to learn how to use the varied public transportation options available and shows participants how and where to go for easy shopping on the local economy.
This "Smart Start!" program is offered the first Thursday each month, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
The primary purpose of the transportation class is to introduce participants to the Korean public transportation system and show them some of the more popular places people shop in the area.
Toney Price, the ACS Relocation Program manager, along with their assigned volunteer college interns, conduct the class. They show participants how to catch city Bus 20, which stops across the street from the Camp Humphreys Pedestrian Gate, to Pyeongtaek's AK Plaza. From there, the class learns about the Korean rail system and how to purchase a T-Money Card, which can be used on either the bus or subway line. Participants also received the opportunity to shop, to try out some of local cuisine and ride the subway line.
"Most of the participants for the monthly class are spouses of active duty service members and the objective is to take away all the doubts they may have about utilizing public transportation," said Suzanne James, ACS director. "We want them to be adventurous and to get out as see Korea by using the public transportation system while here in Korea."
The Relocation Readiness Program incorporated this welcome program to show new members to the community that public transportation is very easy and simple to utilize.
Pam Fandrich, a recent participant, said "I think the Smart Start program is a wonderful way to get newcomers acclimated to the area and hopefully encourage them to get off post and see what the area has to offer. Many of us come without our vehicles, or don't get our vehicles for several months, so knowing how to use public transportation keeps us from feeling confined."
She also added, "By attending Smart Start, I learned where to purchase bus and subway passes and how to load the pass with money. The pass makes it much easier to use the bus since we do not have to worry about having cash and change on hand. I also will be more inclined to give the subway a try as well and although I have used the train, I now know the differences between them."
For more information about this class and other ACS Relocation Program offerings such as Sponsorship Training, Cultural Adaptation, Relocation Counseling and Naturalization Outreach Services, call 753-8401.