Lately, I’ve been traveling up and down California’s coast what feels like weekly. I’ve driven, flown, found a ride on Craigslist, taken the train, and ridden the bus. Don’t get me wrong, when I travel internationally, you can find me tucked into the back of a bus filled with chickens and four people to a seat, but for some reason – I never found the experience quite the same traveling at home. I typically kept to the sky instead, until I tried Megabus’ new California service and it shattered four misconceptions I had about bus travel that have made it a new favorite option.
1. Bus Travel Saves Me Time
When I take a flight, I have to leave for the airport no less than two hours before my departure. Add on an hour-and-fifteen in the air, another 15 minutes waiting for my bag, and an hour getting into the city and things start to add up to a full day of travel.
Granted, the bus takes nearly eight hours, but I think it’s a negligible difference. It still adds up to one day of travel. What’s more, Megabus offers free Wifi allowing me to put in a full workday on from the road. By taking the bus, I actually gain a day by working instead of wasting my valuable paid time off on travel days.
2. Bus Costs Significantly Less
Yes, I can wait for a sale and hope to find a flight from LAX to SFO for as low as $39 each way on Southwest or Virgin Airlines, but the sales don’t always cover the dates I need. With a discount at Megabus and by booking early, however, I can find prices for as low as $1! I can afford to go to and from LA and the Bay everyday (not that I’d want to) at that price and it would still cost less than a single leg of a flight at the lowest price.
3. Bus Travel Is Safe
According to “Bus crashes in the United States: What does the research say?” bus accidents make up a mere 0.6% of all accidents. In fact, the fatality rate for bus passengers is less than one fifth of that for passenger car occupants. Really, when is the last time you saw someone terrified of riding the bus? People save that fear for the skies.
4. Bus Travel Isn’t Boring
Alright, I admit that the route from Los Angeles to San Francisco isn’t exactly scenic for being in such a beautiful state. However, I took the bus from Washington D.C. to Philadelphia recently – and as a lifelong Californian I had my eyes pressed to the window. You see so much more of the country from a bus than a plane. And, did I mention, free Wifi?!