The Monash. It's the mother of all freeways; a bitumen in every sense of the word. For too long it has tormented us with roadworks, delays and the dreaded South Gippsland merge. It's enough to make anyone flip-out ala Michael Douglas in Falling Down.
Listed below are five alternatives that may help to curb the concrete beast during inbound peak. These methods aren't fail-proof, but they are worth consideration (well, maybe except for point five).
Vintage Monash peak hour
1 – Get up earlier
[ADVERT]The most efficient way of navigating the Monash is also the most inconvenient. Leaving anytime before 7am usually ensures a decent run (note I use the term 'usually' very loosely). Depart anytime past 8am and you might as well bring along your back catalogue of Sting to keep company.
2 – Take public transport
Yes, I can hear the groans now. Our PT system is about as reliable as a straw house. Still, if you can put up with the crowds and the odd crazy man it is often a more efficient alternative. Keep an eye out for those express trains, too.
3 – Move house
Seemingly not the most practical suggestion, yet for those of us who don't have a mortgage it is worth considering moving to a rental closer to the city. It'll also save on petrol costs so you don't have to keep those whopping 4c discount vouchers from Coles (yeah I still keep them too).
4 – Avoid the merge. Take the South Gippsland Freeway
The South Gippsland merge is generally considered the worst piece of roadwork design along with the Hoddle Street turnoff. For those traveling inbound from the outer south-east suburbs, it might be worth taking the South Gippsland Freeway before merging onto the Monash. This way you'll avoid most of the damage.
5 – Build a helipad at home and work
Got a warehouse out the back that holds a Scrooge McDuck-like pile of coins? Feel up to training for your helicopter license? Congratulations, your commuting problems are solved.
Whatever method you choose, Godspeed to you brave commuter.
Please note: This information is based on five years of travel from Berwick to Melbourne which, for those unaware, is the equivalent of China and back.