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Old 06-10-2011, 06:33 AM
 
Location: DMV
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Doing some research and I was curious, for those who ride the OMNIRide, how reliable are they? Do they usually pick you up on time? How realistic is their schedules going to and from DC on 66 or 95 with rush hour traffic? And how would you compare it to slug lines, VRE, or just driving (if you work in or near DC)?
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Old 06-10-2011, 06:46 AM
 
Location: Manassas, VA
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My coworker who lives in Manassas rides the Omni every day and loves it. She reads or snoozes. She says that the schedule is pretty true to what it says.

Now, I drive and I like driving....our schedules are different so I can't really compare the two.
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Old 06-10-2011, 08:57 AM
 
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I ride Omniride both ways when I go in to work (I-95/Lake Ridge route). My experience is that they are fairly true to the timetables in the morning for pick-ups. Their drop-off times are fairly accurate, though they can shift a few minutes earlier on very light traffic days to much later when there's an accident on the HOV (of course, no one gets to work on time then). The afternoons are a little less predictable due to DC traffic (ie, hard to predict that a particular bus will be at a particular corner at exactly X time), but Dale City and Lake Ridge buses (the primary ones traveling down I-95) are frequent enough that this doesn't really matter. I normally get home within a 10-15 minute window, and most of this delay is due to traffic in Woodbridge.

Comparison to slugging is tricky. Depending on which lot you want to slug from, the time, and the destination, slugging can either be more dependable and faster than Omniride or much more hit-and-miss. Some slug routes have a constant stream of riders and drivers; others get only a handful and wait times can be lengthy.

I can't compare VRE, since I have ridden it only once or twice. However, I do know that Omniride has a lot more bus runs than VRE has train runs, so if your schedule jumps around, VRE may not be the most reliable manner for you to get home.

Finally, if you drive, you would really want to get a carpool or pick up slugs. I could not drive in the main lanes every day to and from work from Woodbridge and Manassas. The distance, traffic, and stress would drive me crazy. Omniride is definitely more predictable than driving solo.
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Old 06-11-2011, 07:11 AM
 
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I have used Omniride out of the Horner Rd lot the last two years. I take the Washington D.C./State Dept route. I find that pickup in the morning is very reliable. I usually board the next departing bus and only rarely have had to wait for the one after. Arrival downtown is consistent and usually only varies if there is an accident on HOV as Mike said. Early buses in the afternoon (before 4:30) usually keep to schedule. Later buses can get tangled up in afternoon traffic on 15th and 14th streets. If you board on route on I ST or earlier you at least are sitting in comfort as bus goes thru traffic. If they leave downtown by 5:30 it is usually a pretty smooth ride back to Horner Rd. Later departures will get slowed down as HOV restrictions get lifted. Dale City afternoon buses can also get crowded and frequently will be SRO, especially if boarding at the last stop.

I use Omniride over VRE because it gets me within block of work. I would need to transfer to Metro from VRE to accomplish same thing. This would add time and money.
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