Last-minute service changes, abrupt line closures, police investigations and broken rails — we’ve all been there. The train operator tells us that the next stop is the last stop and that all customers must leave the train. Or, perhaps you’re one of the lucky ones waiting on the platform trying to hear garbled announcements only to find out that the next train is skipping your stop... again. You’re late for work, the MTA isn’t forthcoming with information and the train operators don’t even seem to know what’s going on.
The first step is to remain calm (as hard as it may be). There have been far too many incidents of riders pushing or hitting each other and sadly, a few more serious incidents. Once tempers flare, the situation can quickly spiral out of control and make matters worse. But fret no more! We’ve compiled a list of seven ways you can get out of a sticky situation during 7 Train meltdowns.
1. Check 7 Train Blues℠ Early
Our followers diligently post real-time updates on the 7 Train, so check 7 Train Blues℠ before leaving home to see what’s going on. Access Queens also just established a calendar of 7 Train service changes, but you should check the MTA's website for the current information.
2. Bookmark MTA Sites
The MTA's website has a 7 Train Weekend Service Change page that is updated frequently and provides details on the planned work during each weekend shutdown. Note: There are other weekend changes that may affect us, so you should check the Weekender or download the Weekender App. You can also check subway statuses on the MTA's Service Advisory page.
MTA Bus Time enables you to punch in a bus route, stopcode or nearby intersection to see where the next bus is in route. If you’re on your phone right now, visit the mobile site and bookmark your favorite bus lines for quick access later. By the way, here are some great bus options:
- The Q60 drops you off at the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge in Manhattan (60th St). See schedule | Q60 Bus Time
- The Q32 runs up and down Madison Av. There’s a stop at Grand Central too. See schedule | Q32 Bus Time
- The Q39 (Ridgewood to Long Island City) will bring you right to Queens Plaza via 48th Ave. See schedule | Q39 Bus Time
- The Q103 runs from Astoria to Vernon Bl. Though riders have said that service isn’t frequent, it was suggested during the town hall that it be extended to the F train. See schedule | Q103 Bus Time
3. Transfer to a Different Line
Although it’s not ideal, if you find yourself stuck in Western Queens on your way to Manhattan, you can ditch the 7 and transfer to a different line. It may be easier and faster for you to backtrack on a Flushing-bound 7 Train and transfer at 74th St-Broadway to catch a Manhattan-bound E, M, or R train.
Street traffic over the Sunnyside Yards and on Queensboro Bridge can make cab and bus rides hectic, so explore your options. Note: Check the MTA's Service Status widget on the lines you plan on transferring to. For now, you can bookmark the Current Service Status mobile site.
|Train To||How to Get There|
|Lexington Av/53 St (6)||Take the E or M from 74th St-Broadway or Court Sq|
|Lexington Av/59 St (4/5/6)||Take the N or Q from Queensboro Plaza
Take the R from 74th St-Broadway
|Lexington Av/63 St||Take the F from 74th St-Broadway (you’ll have to walk three blocks south to get on the 4/5/6 or N/Q/R)|
You can also take the E, M or R trains at Queens Plaza, which is just off of Queens Boulevard. Whether you're taking an Uber, cab or bus (Q60/Q32), the subway stop is just after the Sunnyside Yards bridge. However, a word to the wise: you might want to get off early and walk over the bridge, especially when there are major service delays and street traffic. Once you're on the Sunnyside Yards bridge, there's no getting off.
4. Take the LIRR
Sometimes, the LIRR cross-honors subway fares during 7 Train meltdowns, but not all the time. During our town hall, the MTA was asked to look into this for all or most planned closures. Until that happens, you can transfer to the LIRR at 61 St-Woodside or Hunters Point Av.
5. Download Transit Apps
7 Train Blues℠ followers were polled and recommended these apps for navigating the subway:
Honorable mentions: Google Maps, Exit Strategy, MyTransit
6. Sign Up for Alerts
Follow @NYCTSubway and/or @NYCTBus on Twitter for quick MTA alerts (also send complaints here instead of @MTA). You can also sign up for email and text message alerts at MyMTAAlerts. Notifications cover subway, bus, and commuter line service, as well as traffic on the MTA’s bridges and tunnels.
7. Get an Excuse Note
Are you always late to work no matter how early you leave home? Quite a few 7 Train riders have had theirs jobs threatened by unempathetic bosses. If you're in the same situation, try filling out the MTA’s Subway Delay Verification form, which sends an email to you to verify train delays. Think of it as a doctor's note.