California Autos Examiner

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Are You Ready For...Megabus?

Update: Megabus is offering 100,000 free trips on its routes between January 16, 2008 and March 11, 2008. Chances are these "free" seats are as limited in availability as the $1 fares. There is still a booking fee of 50 cents. Also, keep in mind that Megabus has a 45 day booking window, so while you may be able to book your departure, your return date might not be available yet. Enter promotion code: WIN2008

Below is the original 8/2/07 post:

Tired of riding the hound? Then you can give Megabus a try. Soon the Bay Area will have a new way to connect San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose with Los Angeles. Megabus has no terminals, it picks up passengers on street corners, and sells its tickets online.

The company thinks it has several advantages over Greyhound: quicker service, few stops, guaranteed seating and low cost ($36 the most expensive ticket). There's even a marketing gimmick, the first four seats of a trip go for the lofty price of one dollar plus a 50 cent reservation fee.

My question is who will be the clientele for Megabus? The company thinks it will be middle-aged women, people ages 18 to 30 and retirees. If MB can keep its buses clean, on time and orderly then I see no reason why it cannot succeed. Midwestern ridership for MB grew from zero to 450,000 in 16 months and is climbing.

To "get on the bus" you'll have to be at one of the following locations:
  • San Francisco: Bus shelter in front of the Caltrain station on Fourth Street between Townsend and King streets

  • San Jose: On Cahill Street, south of the entrance to the Diridon Caltrain station

  • Oakland: On the south side of the service road behind the West Oakland BART station, near Mandela Parkway.

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