Queuing - How To Save Time

We're used to queueing but from a time perspective we can potentially waste a lot of time in queues (especially queueing traffic).  It's holiday season so the roads are packed with holiday makers which can add a significant amount of time to your journey.

My recent drive to visit friends in Somerset was one of the longest I've had.  I ended up in long queues of traffic at the various bottlenecks and roundabout nightmares along the way.

While you can't always avoid queues you can minimize their impact:

  • Plan your visit to avoid peak times, so you don't spend so much time in queues.
  • Order online and avoid some queues completely.
  • Come back later when the queue may have gone down.
  • When travelling - leave early or later.  Avoid peak commuter times.
  • If you can, arrange meetings to avoid travelling in peak time.

If standing in queues is unavoidable - make the most of your static* time:

  • Text or phone a friend
  • Clear text messages
  • Update your contacts
  • Listen to a podcast
  • Read - always have some reading material with you.
  • Use it as thinking time - jot down notes and ideas about a problem, new project.

* By static I mean not moving - i.e. don't participate in any of these while driving.

Next time you're stuck in a queue - decide if standing waiting is the best use of your time or if there is something more productive you could be doing.

When you can't avoid a queue - just go with it.
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