Daily Marauder


GOT WI-FI?: YOUR BUS DOES PART 2 by Martha

GOT WI-FI?: YOUR BUS DOES PART 2

magic-bus21

Photo Credit: Esta

Guest Writer: Martha Rivera

The I-95 corridor between NY, DC and Boston is one of the most heavily traveled in the country. As someone who travels between New York and Washington DC several times a year, I’ve gone by plane, train, automobile; you name it. Most commuters know that the best way to travel between these cities is Amtrak. You get a guaranteed departure and arrival time, convenient station locations, plush seating, power outlets, a snack bar on the train, and cocktails. But, my techie friends, the $125 one-way price tag is pretty steep and furthermore the train can’t offer you the one thing you can’t live with out: Wi-Fi.

There is, however, a mode of transportation that can: the coach bus. You probably associate taking a bus with ghetto stations, the Chinatown bus, cramped seats, sketchy people, and overcrowding. Well, times have really changed. In the past year, a slew of bus lines have come onto the scene that not only offer Wi-Fi but quality and comfort too.

Bolt Bus

olt-bus

Owned by the Greyhound Corporation, a Greyhound bus it isn’t. The orange exterior alone screams funky times on wheels. Plus, outlets for your computer, ample leg room, nice lighting, a fair share of eye candy and witty bus drivers make this bus more like Greyhound’s way cooler cousin.

Destinations: Boston, DC, NYC, & Philly

Price: Fares technically start at a $1 and increase as the bus fills up. But unless you book your bus months in advance, plan to spend $24 each way.

Wi-Fi Speed: The Wi-Fi wasn’t fast enough to stream video smoothly or to effectively log on to my company’s online server, but I did get my full share of web surfing. Plus, the added benefit of outlets. Now you don’t need to worry about conserving your battery life, especially if the bus is stuck in traffic.

Survey says:

The Bolt Bus is definitely giving Amtrak a run for its money. If there are no travel set-backs, paying $24 to ride a comfortable leather seat while playing on my laptop beats paying $125 to be able to drink wine freely. Plus, hello, it’s called a flask. Click here to book.

DC2NY

dc2ny

If the Bolt Bus is your cool cousin, the DC2NY is your refined aunt. The quality of the bus is slightly more upscale than the Bolt Bus. You’re provided with complimentary bottled water, seats which conform to your body, flat screen TV’s, and a vote on what movie everyone wants to watch and whether you want a rest stop or not. Now that’s what I call quality.

Desinations: NYC & DC

Price: $28 one way/$50 RT

Wi-Fi Speed: The password protection seemed a little odd unless they really are convinced that someone will tailgate the entire way down with a computer in hand to steal some connection. But apart from that, I had an uninterrupted connection the entire ride down. Not fast enough for uninterrupted streaming video, but fast enough to get the surfing job done.

Survey says:

The DC2NY is a well run bus line. The customer is the number one priority and their needs are always taken into consideration. The drivers were also very courteous and friendly. Its only flaw is no power outlets. Click here to book.

MegaBus

megabus

UK-based double-decker Megabus burst onto the New York bus scene last March. This double decker bus promised convenient online booking, guaranteed seating, luggage storage, and Wi-Fi.

Destinations: Baltimore, Boston, DC, NYC, Philly, & upstate New York

Price: Fares start at a $1 and increase until it’s full. Price caps out at $21 one way

Wi-Fi Speed: There was no Wi-Fi! Or at least, that was the case on the bus I took. When I asked the driver about it, he looked at me like he’d never heard of this thing called the interweb. That being said, there are ‘reports’ that they do have it. Whatever…

Survey says:

I thought taking a double decker bus meant I could live out my anglophile fantasies. Instead, I felt claustrophobic, the seats were cramped, there was no overhead luggage storage, no heat, and more importantly NO WI-FI. Oh, and the exterior is tacky. Who is that chubby Pillsbury Doughboy look alike on the back end of the bus? Veto. If you’re still down, click here.


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3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

love it. nice job.

Comment by Navin

There are 20 Acela trainsets, and one of them is currently testing Wifi. It’s coming to the rails, but the EMI environment of the rails is demanding. The Downeaster, from Boston to Maine, does have Wifi.

Comment by Ran

The connections are unreliable. Also, the more people on the bus the slower it gets.

I hear Google has a sweet setup with T-1 speeds! Fast enough to stream. Some company named hobnob is doing it.

Comment by Bob




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