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Greyhound
#16
Word coming in that Greyhound will be completely pulling out of western Canada (everywhere west of Ontario). The Vancouver-Seattle run will remain but run by the US division.
My Twitter: @KevinLMaps
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#17
(07-09-2018, 02:55 PM)KevinL Wrote: Word coming in that Greyhound will be completely pulling out of western Canada (everywhere west of Ontario). The Vancouver-Seattle run will remain but run by the US division.

That is disappointing.

Will there be no transportation options to cities as big as Calgary then?

I had a conversation with a co-worker today, and I really have to ask what Greyhound's future intentions even are.  We're seeing a growth in transit usage, but Greyhound seems steadfastly opposed to capitalizing on it.  I have only ever seen them reduce service.  And they won't even make small, free, changes that would improve their service, like allowing their route data to appear on Google Maps, or accepting digital tickets.

Those two problems alone are probably the primary reason I don't make much use of greyhound, despite it really being the best option for many trips that I take.

So that's why I ask, what is their business management team even thinking?
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#18
I wonder if there would be a case to start some sort of subsidized service to replace this? Greyhound was probably the only non-driving choice in a lot of places... when I took a bus from Calgary to Lethbridge last year I took a Red Arrow bus but it seemed almost like a luxury bus option, there was self-serve coffee/pop and on-board wifi. I think it was over 50$ for a 2.5 hour trip so it wasn't cheap.
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#19
I had the same thought. VIAbus?
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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#20
(07-09-2018, 03:01 PM)danbrotherston Wrote:
(07-09-2018, 02:55 PM)KevinL Wrote: Word coming in that Greyhound will be completely pulling out of western Canada (everywhere west of Ontario). The Vancouver-Seattle run will remain but run by the US division.

That is disappointing.

Will there be no transportation options to cities as big as Calgary then?

I had a conversation with a co-worker today, and I really have to ask what Greyhound's future intentions even are.  We're seeing a growth in transit usage, but Greyhound seems steadfastly opposed to capitalizing on it.  I have only ever seen them reduce service.  And they won't even make small, free, changes that would improve their service, like allowing their route data to appear on Google Maps, or accepting digital tickets.

Those two problems alone are probably the primary reason I don't make much use of greyhound, despite it really being the best option for many trips that I take.

So that's why I ask, what is their business management team even thinking?

Don't know, but my understanding is that ridership is down, not up, expenses are up, and apparently, they were losing money servicing these areas.

Not sure how accurate all of that is, but it does not make sense to pull out of a market if you're earning money. Could be a ploy for funding from the Feds, but this Liberal government won't give two hoots, let along money, to fix the issue.
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#21
(07-10-2018, 07:20 AM)jeffster Wrote:
(07-09-2018, 03:01 PM)danbrotherston Wrote: That is disappointing.

Will there be no transportation options to cities as big as Calgary then?

I had a conversation with a co-worker today, and I really have to ask what Greyhound's future intentions even are.  We're seeing a growth in transit usage, but Greyhound seems steadfastly opposed to capitalizing on it.  I have only ever seen them reduce service.  And they won't even make small, free, changes that would improve their service, like allowing their route data to appear on Google Maps, or accepting digital tickets.

Those two problems alone are probably the primary reason I don't make much use of greyhound, despite it really being the best option for many trips that I take.

So that's why I ask, what is their business management team even thinking?

Don't know, but my understanding is that ridership is down, not up, expenses are up, and apparently, they were losing money servicing these areas.

Not sure how accurate all of that is, but it does not make sense to pull out of a market if you're earning money. Could be a ploy for funding from the Feds, but this Liberal government won't give two hoots, let along money, to fix the issue.

I'm not sure what you're replying to here.  I was pointing out what bad business choices I feel have led to the low ridership and eventual pull out. 

Of course your point is also a good argument for transit to be publicly owned, not privately owned.  It is a public service and shouldn't necrssarily make money.

Moreover, the argument that private is more efficient and innovative is kinda contradicted by this.  Greyhound is by far the most archaic transit option in our region.
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#22
(07-10-2018, 07:39 AM)danbrotherston Wrote:
(07-10-2018, 07:20 AM)jeffster Wrote: Don't know, but my understanding is that ridership is down, not up, expenses are up, and apparently, they were losing money servicing these areas.

Not sure how accurate all of that is, but it does not make sense to pull out of a market if you're earning money. Could be a ploy for funding from the Feds, but this Liberal government won't give two hoots, let along money, to fix the issue.

I'm not sure what you're replying to here.  I was pointing out what bad business choices I feel have led to the low ridership and eventual pull out. 

Of course your point is also a good argument for transit to be publicly owned, not privately owned.  It is a public service and shouldn't necrssarily make money.

Moreover, the argument that private is more efficient and innovative is kinda contradicted by this.  Greyhound is by far the most archaic transit option in our region.

Part of the problem is that bus service is regulated, so Greyhound has less need to innovate.
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#23
(07-10-2018, 07:39 AM)danbrotherston Wrote:
(07-10-2018, 07:20 AM)jeffster Wrote: Don't know, but my understanding is that ridership is down, not up, expenses are up, and apparently, they were losing money servicing these areas.

Not sure how accurate all of that is, but it does not make sense to pull out of a market if you're earning money. Could be a ploy for funding from the Feds, but this Liberal government won't give two hoots, let along money, to fix the issue.

I'm not sure what you're replying to here.  I was pointing out what bad business choices I feel have led to the low ridership and eventual pull out. 

Of course your point is also a good argument for transit to be publicly owned, not privately owned.  It is a public service and shouldn't necrssarily make money.

Moreover, the argument that private is more efficient and innovative is kinda contradicted by this.  Greyhound is by far the most archaic transit option in our region.

Or perhaps public/private partnership.

Depending on ridership, they could different size buses too, right?

Though you still need both the feds and provinces on board as well, especially the feds if it's interprovincial.
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#24
(07-10-2018, 03:06 PM)jeffster Wrote: Depending on ridership, they could different size buses too, right?

That could help, but doesn’t make that big a difference because they still need to pay a driver and maintain a vehicle. Also now they have at least 2 different kinds of vehicles, which makes maintenance and route scheduling more complicated.

I would be interested to know to what extent regulation plays a role in this. To some extent regulations protect incumbents, but of course that is irrelevant if the last incumbent is leaving. On the other hand, regulations make it harder for new market entrants, and for existing players to innovate, so possibly the regulations are too complicated and hard to follow. I really have no idea.
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#25
Smaller vehicles are still less expensive to purchase, to refuel and to maintain; they could run some modern vans similar to what Airways Transit uses (Mercedes Sprinter, Ford Transit, RAM ProMaster) for much-reduced vehicle costs, but the driver costs would not vary much.

The simplest way to minimize the regulation would be a subsidy per passenger (or passenger-km) that declines as the number of passengers grows -- and that's predicated on some reasonable minimum level of service on the subsidized routes. If two companies choose to both run buses on the same route, they could do that, but they would end up sharing the passenger demand (and thus also sharing the subsidies). So define the eligible routes, set the minimum schedule (minimum 2 or 3 runs per day?), determine the subsidy for each route, and then open up the routes for private company traffic.
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#26
CBC: Thunder Bay bus company adding western routes to fill void left by Greyhound cancellations
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#27
(07-10-2018, 05:15 PM)Bob_McBob Wrote: CBC: Thunder Bay bus company adding western routes to fill void left by Greyhound cancellations

Good to hear that.

I've heard that the Greyhound ownership was more interested in making money than in running a bus company. (MBAs may train someone better in making money than in domain-specific skills). Might be one of the problems with capitalism as currently practiced in North America.
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