America Finally Gets a Real Bus

megabus

No offense, Greyhound. Or you, Amtrak. But you’ve caused myself and many other Americans enough travel delays to read War and Peace fifty times over.

Greyhound is notorious for travel delays, uncomfortable seats, bad smells, and confusing ticketing practices. Amtrak, though it evokes a vague, undefinable sense of nostalgia, is about as expedient as a carrier pigeon.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel. British corporation Megabus just went nationwide. Current developments set it up to make a major dent in the Houndtrak hegemony.

On May 30, the big double-deckers made their way to the East Coast. Offering intercity travel between major hubs such as Boston and New York, the company’s discount ($1) fares and online booking have made a popular alternative in the Midwest and West coast. They claim to offer a new fleet, on-the-road video, and, starting June 9th, free Wi-Fi.

To launch their East Coast branch, the company offered free seats to 10,000 East Coast travelers. Which explains why the website is consistently impossible to access.

Sounds like a grand deal to me. People in the past have cited very low fares as attracting really scary passengers. At this stage in the recessionary game, I think I’d be willing to brave it. What do you think?