Matt and I just returned from our first trip to New York City sans kids. We had a phenomenal time! I’m planning on sharing all of the fun details this week for those who want to live vicariously through us!!!
The first part of our trip was…horrible. We had a limited budget and didn’t want to spend the majority of it on travel expenses…and we wanted to be able to spend more time in NYC…soooooooo…we decided to take the Megabus. The images online looked great…comfy, plush seats that recline, tables in between the sets of seats to use for eating or whatever and free wifi! It only cost $120 for both of us to go to NYC and back! We could watch movies, play cards, sleep and relax and it would only take us two hours longer than driving ourselves!
We should have known better.
Our bus from Toledo departed at 5:30 a.m. When we got on the bus, we couldn’t find any seats because people were taking up two seats each. The bus attendant finally got some people to move their stuff, but Matt and I still didn’t get to sit together. The seats were very small…think coach airline seats with very little headroom…and they barely reclined. My knees were pressed up against the seat in front of me. It was hot. There was no wifi. It was bad. But that wasn’t the worst part.
The clientele was…less than desirable, let’s say. The driver looked like they just picked him up on Toledo’s scariest corner, gave him a blue Megabus shirt and let him take the wheel. The “assistant” to the driver was worse. When we stopped at our first stop in Cleveland, the police were there to search the bus. We still have no idea why, but they were searching the bus for a person. Like I said, the clientele was…questionable. From Cleveland to our next stop, we heard a man downstairs scream “WAKE UP!! I’M ALREADY GOING TO A FUNERAL, I DON’T WANT IT TO BE MINE TOO!” Apparently our driver had nodded off. However, Matt and I were able to switch seats and sit next to teach other. I almost forgot! Matt saw most of the men from our bus in the gas station bathroom “showering” in the sink! The next leg of the trip to NYC was pretty uneventful until we got to the Lincoln Tunnel. A sketchy looking man, who hadn’t moved the whole trip, suddenly woke up, arranged his bag on his lap and took out two cell phones and turned them on. Let me say…there is absolutely no security on these buses. They didn’t know who was on the bus, what was in our luggage, nothing. All of a sudden, Matt and I felt very panicky about being in the Lincoln Tunnel and the possibility of a bomb detonation. Thankfully, we arrived in NYC safe and sound and so happy to be off the death trap of a bus.
I immediately started looking up flights home or rental cars. Matt and I decided, as awful as the experience was, we just couldn’t justify spending between $300 and $600 just to get home. Luckily, we had a week of bliss before we had to head back. The return trip was slightly better. We got seats together on the bottom of the bus which was slightly roomier. The clientele was a little less scary. The drivers were still scary as shit. The second driver left his microphone on and used f-bombs galore while trying to figure out HOW TO DRIVE THE BUS! He said things such as “What does this button do? Why is this light on? How do I turn that on?” There were super loud children in front of us and super chatty annoying women behind us. We were relieved when they got off at the first stop only to be replaced by a woman hacking up a lung and a man who wouldn’t stop talking to the adorable college girl who had the bad luck to sit next to him. Neither of us could sleep on the bus, so when we arrived home at 4:30 a.m. after traveling all night, we were beyond exhausted.
I would say the Megabus would be OK for short trips…like between 2 and 4 hours. But even then, I’m not sure I’d risk it again. I felt very unsafe and uncomfortable and unhappy.
To amuse ourselves, Matt and I thought of alternate slogans for Megabus to use in their advertising:
My favorite, from me: MEGABUS! It will cure your fear of flying!
Megabus: When you like cuddling with strangers.
Megabus: Winner of the prestigious “Most Misleading Pictures on a Website” award.
Megabus: We now offer free WiFi on all routes….just kidding!
Megabus: Third world country experience right here in the u s of a! I may abandon this bus if anyone gets on with a chicken, pig or goat.
It was an experience to say the least…one we will not be repeating! We had a wonderful time other than our travel…check back for more NYC posts this week!
Have you ever used Megabus? How was it for you?