To most the 86 tram is simply a gateway to the Docklands shopping precinct, your ride to Smith street or one of the many trams that can pick you up at Swanston street and drop you off at Elizabeth. For others, riding the 86 tram from Docklands to RMIT Bundoora is a regular occurrence and it can be treacherous.
The most important thing to remember about the 86 tram is that, not only does it run all the way from Docklands to Bundoora but there are also two Universities located towards the end of the line. This means it is inevitable that the 86 is always packed.
The easiest way to avoid the crowds of Uni students is to travel on the half hour. All University classes begin and end on the hour, meaning the trams are at their fullest just before the hour. Classes usually don't start until 9am and no student ever wants to arrive early, which means the trams don't get busy until after 8am.
A massive perk of catching the 86 tram is the staggered finishing times of University classes, which are also different to schools and offices. Rarely will you have to stand on the 86 tram in the afternoon peak hour rush.
Remember to always validate your Myki or purchase a ticket while braving the 86. Being surrounded by Universities and other educations institutions means that ticket inspectors are rampant on this line. They will make you produce your concession card too, so don't try and pull a sneaky on them that way.
Finally, when travelling on the 86 at night or on the weekend, watch out for unruly college students living on campus at La Trobe and RMIT. While they are harmless, they can be loud, are often drunk and they take up all the seat.