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Old 12-18-2007, 12:05 PM
 
419 posts, read 1,846,590 times
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Every time I drive by a Greyhound Bus I tell my self I am going to take the bus from New York City to Washington DC. I think it would be nice to leave the driving to someone else. But I suffer from a fear of closed places and wonder if I would freak out if the bus is stuck in traffic and I could not get out. Or maybe the people would not be so great on the bus.

Anyone have Greyhound Bus stories?
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Old 12-18-2007, 12:31 PM
 
Location: Gulfport, MS
469 posts, read 2,556,637 times
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Chinatown buses (http://www.staticleap.com/chinatownbus/ - broken link) are cheaper than Greyhound. As for bus rides, the longest I ever took was 12 hours from Istanbul to Athens -- not recommended! DC to NYC won't be too bad.
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Old 12-18-2007, 01:21 PM
 
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I've taken Greyhound a couple of times during college - NYC to Binghamton, NYC to DC, Binghamton to Boston (now that was a looongg ride) I don't remember having any issues with it. I do remember long lines at the Port Authority but that's about it. Greyhound has always been reliable in my experience. Since you have a fear of closed places, maybe Amtrak would be an alternative? At least you can get up and move around but it is also twice as much.

As for Chinatown buses, the last one I took smelled like pee from DC to NYC...(back in '01) I also took one from NYC to Boston on one of the smaller buses and it was really shaky because it was going so fast. I'm not saying it is bad and hopefully they have fixed some of the kinks they had but I had a friend who is from Chinatown and now lives in DC and had too many bad experience with the Chinatown buses.

Here's another link she gave me as an alternative to the Chinatown buses:

http://www.washny.com/

Hope that helped!
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Old 12-18-2007, 04:01 PM
 
Location: Camberville
12,030 posts, read 16,771,078 times
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I've only been on Greyhound once and it was a bad experience. I was supposed to take a train from Lincoln, Nebraska to Boston in order to get back in order to meet my mom to move back into my dorm. My train ended up being 7 hours late (which turned into 14 hours before we got to Chicago) so I missed my connecting train to Albany which only comes once a day. I ended up taking Greyhound from Chicago to Boston.

The first leg was Chicago to Cleveland which was fine. There were very few people on the bus so I got to spread out and we stopped for food at a big rest stop with 2 restaurants inside as well. That ended up being late so I had to rush onto my 2nd bus to the only seat left of a packed bus. The woman next to me smelled at if she had not showered or brushed her teeth in weeks, compounded by the smell of cigarettes (which I'm horribly allergic to). The woman kept getting up and stumbling over me to run to puke in the bathroom because she was so drunk. When she woke up the next morning somewhere in the middle of upstate NY, she didn't know who I was.

Even when she got off, the seat itself STUNK, so I had to switch seats quickly with someone at the stop because every seat was packed through the whole thing and some people even had to stand so not to have to wait until the next bus hours later.

It was over 24 hours on the bus. :\

Besides being so late, my Amtrak experiences have always been vastly better.
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Old 12-18-2007, 04:25 PM
 
Location: Jonquil City (aka Smyrna) Georgia- by Atlanta
16,248 posts, read 21,325,293 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by questioner2 View Post
Every time I drive by a Greyhound Bus I tell my self I am going to take the bus from New York City to Washington DC. I think it would be nice to leave the driving to someone else. But I suffer from a fear of closed places and wonder if I would freak out if the bus is stuck in traffic and I could not get out. Or maybe the people would not be so great on the bus.

Anyone have Greyhound Bus stories?
Why not take the Amtrac Azela which is faster, cleaner, bigger and does not have people with bad body odors or reek of cigarettes and booze next to you?
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Old 12-18-2007, 08:01 PM
 
Location: Tucson AZ & Leipzig, Germany
2,379 posts, read 7,764,578 times
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KevK is right, Amtrak is the way to go from NYC to DC. If traffic on the I95 corridor is bad or the weather is bad, the bus gets stuck in traffic or can get delayed. On the train, delays on the NY to DC corridor are not very frequent, they run pretty tight schedules. Plus, if you don't like who sits next to you, just get up and move somewhere else, even to another train car. Most Amtrak routes let you pick where ever you want to sit, hopefully the Azela route is like that too. Train might cost a few $$ more, but it's worth it. I would also pick the train instead of flying from NY to DC, it can save all kinds of airport hassles, security checks and delays.
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Old 12-18-2007, 10:00 PM
 
Location: Camberville
12,030 posts, read 16,771,078 times
Reputation: 19763
The Acela is normally pretty packed so while you can pick where you sit, you might be limited getting on in NYC (many people going from Boston and Connecticut to points south). The Acela is the high speed commuter train though... there's a cheaper Amtrak train that's a bit slower (maybe adds an hour and a half to Boston-DC) but is often better priced. I think it's just called a regional. Sometimes the Acela has good deals.

The earlier you book, the cheaper tickets will be. I book at least a month in advance and often spend only around $100 for round trip Boston to DC if I pick and off peak hour/day.
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Old 12-19-2007, 07:47 AM
 
Location: Cold Frozen North
1,928 posts, read 4,632,670 times
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I haven't been on a Greyhound bus since a field trip in 8th grade. It was fun then, but now I've heard too many nasty things about many of the people that take busses cross-country. Amtrak is a good alternative if it goes where you're going. I took Amtrak from Chicago to Seattle (the Empire Builder route) once. While the trip was pleasant and the scenery spectacular, it did get boring at times. Just not a lot to do, but at least you can get up and walk around the train and move between cars. Not many places to go on a bus. I'll never fly since I had a very bad experience the last plane flight I was on.

My preference will always be to drive. You have the maximum amount of flexibility to stop wherever you want and whenever you want and aren't sitting next to strangers that you may not like and don't care to talk with.
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Old 12-20-2007, 03:47 PM
LM1
 
Location: NEFL/Chi, IL
833 posts, read 759,920 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighPlainsDrifter73 View Post
It was fun then, but now I've heard too many nasty things about many of the people that take busses cross-country.
Everything you heard is true, but that's half the fun.

There's an awful lot to be said about life on the margins; it seems like Greyhound is a magnet for every vagabond, traveler, bum, n'er-do-well and tragedy case out there. Of course, that's precisely why I love traveling via such methods (I'm an Amtrak man, myself) but to other, more "sterilized" types, I can certainly understand the aversion they might have towards Greyhound. I happen to find it invigorating. I like being surrounded by people with nothing left to lose.
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Old 12-20-2007, 03:57 PM
 
4,834 posts, read 5,548,394 times
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Thumbs up long trip cross country

My late best friend and I were returning home from Korea a number of years ago and came back to America via Fort Lewis, Washington. It was on a holiday and we couldn't get a flight out from Seattle, so we traveled to Portland, Oregon and found the same to be true, so we hopped on a Greyhound Bus and it took 4-1/2 days to get to New York City. My buddy got off and went home to Brooklyn and I hopped the train to Providence, RI. It was a long arduous trek but we made a few friends along the way and saw America firsthand at every stop along the way.
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