I came in the train

The rule for using ‘in’ or ‘on’ for transport is:
– independent or special transport uses in
– services use on
* It is not about being inside or on top.

An easy way to think about this is:
Does the transport usually do this journey, even when I am not here?
If it does, it probably uses ‘on’.

Independent transport vs. service

Independent transportService
boat (private boat)boat (ferry)
plane (private plane)plane (normal plane from airport)

Exception: bicycles are independent transport, but use on.


She came to the party in a taxi.They went to Blackpool on the train.
Jules travelled to the island in her boat. (*private boat)Darlene went to France on the ferry.
I left my wallet in the plane. (*my plane)I left my bag on the plane. (*normal plane)
Francis went to the shop on her bicycle.