Megabus issues
June 25, 2008 4:15 AM   Subscribe

Waste-of-question-filter: Help with Megabus from Boston to NYC.

I've taken Greyhound/Peter Pan and the various Chinatown companies numerous times, but this will be my first on the new Megabus. All the other companies have you buy a ticket for a particular departure time, but when you actually leave depends on when you get to the station and how many people are in line in front of you.

I have a ticket for a 12:30 Megabus. Is this a real reservation as in I have a seat reserved, or a false sense of security like the rest? If real: How long before my bus leaves am i supposed to be there?

As a bonus question: all the other companies give you actual tickets. I only have a "reservation confirmation" email from Megabus that claims my 24-digit reservation is all i need to board. Is there really no ticket to print and give them (I really ask this because I got a payment error on their website, but the email confirmation came through anyway, and I'm wondering if something screwy happened and i missed the ticket).
posted by jk252b to Travel & Transportation (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
The 24-digit reservation code is really all that you need. If I recall correctly, the driver has a list of all of the reservation codes and checks your code against his list as you get on the bus.

I don't know what you mean by "false sense of security." You don't have a specific seat reserved (you choose seats by the first come, first served method) but in my experience, the bus did leave on time. So you need to be there early enough; personally, I'd get there at 12.
posted by mustcatchmooseandsquirrel at 6:16 AM on June 25, 2008

All you need is the code. You don't even have to print the confirmation email. Just write the code down on a post-it note and stick it in your pocket, or, even better, write the code on your arm. Seriously, the code is all the driver will need in order to allow you onto the bus.

I have taken the Megabus several times, and in my experience, the time that you reserved is a close approximation of the time that you will leave. Get to the bus stop at least 30 minutes before your bus is scheduled to depart.
posted by waltzing astronomers at 6:26 AM on June 25, 2008

I've never taken the east coast MB, but I've ridden out of Chicago many times. The bus is often late (though they've been getting better), but there's nothing like the weird system you describe to determine departure. It leaves when it is going to leave, regardless of who is there (though we did stop a couple blocks down the road once for someone who had missed us). You have a seat reserved in that you will get on that bus when it goes, but there's no specific seating of course.
posted by adamdschneider at 6:48 AM on June 25, 2008

They are very serious about reservations- I was early once and wasn't allowed on the 5 bus even though there were open seats. It's much more organized and "fair" than the Chinatown busses. They've been about 15-20 minutes late everytime I've ridden with them, but be there about 20 minutes ahead of departure just to be safe.
posted by GilloD at 6:59 AM on June 25, 2008

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