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The Pros & Cons Of Riding Greyhound Bus
What you need to know about going Greyhound
I am constantly traveling about the USA and for the most part I have been on the greyhound bus. I can say that I've traveled Greyhound at least 25 times within the last decade. Out of 25 trips, my luggage was lost or stolen but once and about 10 times I waited for hours for buses that were 2-3 hours late. On one occasion where the bus driver was to switch with another at a certain stop, the new driver was 2 hours late and was only one block from the station. He had not received his wake up call. Lastly on a trip to Las Vegas from Ohio the bus I was on broke down and we waited for 4 hours for another bus to come get us. I will take my decade long experience and let you know the pros & cons of riding the greyhound bus lines.
Here are the Pros of riding the greyhound bus line
1. Save money - if you didn't know, it is cheaper to ride a bus than it is to fly a plane. But did you know that if you sign up for Greyhound rewards then you'll save 10% on your ticket purchases made online or at the counter. Also and importantly so if you reserve your ticket two weeks or more in advance then it's it 20%-30% cheaper.
2. Go anywhere in continental USA and also they have plentiful destinations in Canada and Mexico. Most big cities in America have airports but even more cities have Greyhound bus stations to better accommodate smaller regions.
3. Sight seeing is one of Greyhounds best attributes. There can be a lot of stops before you reach your destination. I must state that going across America from Ohio to Nevada had a lot of awesome things to see, for example we rode through the Rockies alongside the river which was a beautiful sight.
4. Your ticket is still good - say you missed your bus for any reason, you have 72 hours (3 days) to get on a bus that is going the same way your ticket is. Also if you were going to Miami, Fl from New Jersey and decided to stop one day in Philadelphia then your ticket is still valid for Miami long as you board a bus in route to Miami within 72 hours.
5. FREE Wifi and recharging abilities - if your traveling to and from a big city then chances are that you are on a new Greyhound bus. The new buses include more personal space including your leg space, free WIFI for your laptops and plugs to plug your laptop in or recharge your cell phones.
Here are the Cons of riding the greyhound bus line
1. Your can easily get your bag stolen - when you go to a greyhound bus station you have to check in one bag for free. This is the bag that you can put under the bus and not on the overhead storage. If your moving or traveling with more than 2 bags then you best be very careful. your bags are placed under the bus but are not guaranteed to be there when you arrive at your destination. In fact Greyhound bus lines mention on their website that you are responsible for your own luggage regardless of where you or they place it. Greyhound does mention that they will pay up to $100 cash if they find that your bag was lost or stolen from the bottom of the bus. When I got my bag stolen they made me wait 4 hours and they never refunded me a cent. I was told to wait around because my bags could have been placed on another bus by mistake. I couldn't wait around any longer so I lost out by leaving the station.
2. You are not guaranteed to reach your destination on time - at any given time due to employee tardiness, bus problems or weather your schedule can be altered. There is nothing they will do to re-compensate you for the loss of anything, whether it be time or money.
3. Find yourself waiting - If your trip is short then no need to worry but if your traveling more then 200 miles then brace yourself. You might find yourself waiting in an unknown city and they might not offer you an explanation as to why your still sitting at a station waiting for a bus.
4. Dealing with other people - Keep in mind that when you go Greyhound people could have been on that bus for hours to days before you and are tired and moody. I found that keeping the night light above you on can piss people off who are trying to sleep at night. Also some people who been on the bus for some time are not fresh and might smell a bit. Personal hygiene was something that did bother because I was smelling body odors and food that made my stomach turn.
Here are some tips to better your greyhound experience
1. Keep any small back packs on the overhead
2. Make sure your baggage under the bus is tagged twice
3. Manage to get a seat on the front of the bus (so that you won't have to wait for everybody to get off the bus at every rest stop)
4. Purchase your ticket in advance and have more money for food on the road.