Back in 2007, Megabus — an economical bus service popular on the East Coast and Europe — started their service in California and Nevada offering their ridiculously low $1 fare (obviously in limited quantities, of course) to popular destinations like Las Vegas, San Francisco, and San Diego. I was one of those who took advantage of the dollar fare taking the new bus service from LA to San Diego for a weekend getaway. You can’t beat a dollar. That’s why I was pretty disappointed to learn when they discontinued their service only about a year later due to low ridership numbers.
However, I believe that Los Angeles has changed quite a bit in the last 5 years. We are slowly but surely revitalizing our urban neighborhoods and creating transit-oriented communities thanks to funding mechanisms like Measure R and shifting political views that favor “elegant density.” Downtown LA — the urban heart of Los Angeles — is finally reaching a critical mass of residents and businesses, which has also helped jump start an urban culture that embraces (or is at least receptive to) walking and transit usage. All these gradual changes, I believe, may be favorable to Megabus returning to the West Coast and reinforces the idea that LA is becoming more urban instead of just suburban. Also, having ridden Megabus between Toronto and Montreal and Philadelphia and Washington DC, I am excited to see them return to LA.
According to the Megabus website, “Megabus.com, which previously served West Coast residents in 2007-2008, has returned based on customer demand,” said Mike Alvich, VP of Marketing and PR for Megabus. “We’ve seen impressive growth throughout North America and are confident that our 21st century double-decker buses with Wi-Fi and power outlets combined with our outstanding prices will be a success among California and Nevada residents.”
Both Los Angeles and San Francisco will serve as hubs for the new West Coast Megabus service. In LA, Union Station will serve as the passenger pick-up spot at the Patsaouras Transit Plaza (the same transit plaza where the LAX Flyaway is as well). To celebrate their inaugural service, the first week starting Dec 12 to Dec 19, 2012 will be $1 fares for all passengers traveling during that time! Currently, LA connects you to Las Vegas, San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose. Hopefully they’ll add back LA to San Diego in the future as well.
To book a ticket, visit megabus.com