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Need Advise- Taking Buses In Us

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by SunPa, Jan 14, 2019.

  1. SunPa

    SunPa Platinum IL'ite

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    US ILites, can someone help me with review of inter city buses in US ( Mid Pacific area)

    Specifically : Burlington Trailways , it is a 2hr + ride
    Any pointers /precations/ advice - for taking such bus rides ? Especially during this month with all the snow.

    Any experience, advice is greatly appreciated.
     
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  2. SunPa

    SunPa Platinum IL'ite

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    Please help,
    Oh, I got the region wrong.
    The bus journey is from UIUC (Champaign) to Indianapolis

    Tagging @Viswamitra , @Rihana , @kkrish , @Laks09
    Racking my brain to think who else I can tag.
     
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  3. SunPa

    SunPa Platinum IL'ite

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  4. sokanasanah

    sokanasanah IL Hall of Fame

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    I have taken buses when I've been unable to plan ahead. I have had no bad experiences.

    Travel from university town to big city (like your trip) means that the passengers are mostly students - a fairly predictable crowd, easy to relate to. Since it's the cheapest form of travel, the clientele for other long ride inter-city buses can be somewhat alarmingly 'rough' for a wuss like me, whose idea of adventure is a daring foray into poorly lit stacks at the library, but then that probably says more about me than about anyone else.

    Hmmm, how do I frame this kind of judging books by their covers? I've taken to classifying my co-passengers into two classes: the first would return a forgotten bag intact assuming you had contact info in it; the second is the "finders-keepers" group. Economic hardship means that you're more likely to find the latter group on a bus. Rather like an Indian train - I've seen people chain and lock their luggage in 3-tier sleepers. So, no big deal, just exercise due caution.

    For a two-hour ride, I have no perceptive suggestions. I'd say it's easy, especially if you've traveled by bus/train in India.

    My reservations/suggestions re bus rides are:
    (1) Long rides are slow. Buses often swing into towns along the way, making the ride longer than driving in your own car.
    (2) The tish-tish-chikka-chikka leaky earphone enthusiasts listening to mind-numbing music the entire way. :mad:
    (3) The cell-phone yammerers. I'm all for eavesdropping (purely for research of course) but one-sided conversations are torture. Hours of it even more so. So take your own good music & a quality headset.:rage:
    (4) I tend to get sleepy or queasy on bus rides. A dose of Dramamine may be in order.
    (5) The onboard 'facilities' can be dicey. (Well, that happens even on 777s).
    (6) Some bus stops may be out of the way. The cheaper bus companies like to avoid paying terminal fees. Figure out how you're going to get home from the stop.
    (7) No terminal means that you may be waiting/queueing on the sidewalk close to some landmark. No roof! In bad weather, this is irritating. In rainy weather not only are you getting wet, your bags may do worse! You may not be able to set your back-pack down. So check on this & prepare accordingly.
    (8) The seats up front, especially on the top deck of double-decker buses, offer good views, but no leg room. There's no seat under which you can extend your legs. So, if you're tall, avoid those seats.
    (9) The Wi-Fi is often slow, but serviceable. The power-outlets are iffy. If you want to watch videos, downlaod ahead of time, don't count on streaming.
    (10) My essentials: neck/back pillow, NC-Bluetooth headset, eyeshades, warm pullover/hoodie in case the AC gets aggressive or drafty, books, music, water, energy bars, comfy slip-ons. If you wear glasses, a good hard-case will protect your specs if you decide to nap.

    That's all that I can think of for now. Not too different from flying really, so you're probably well prepared already!
    :beer-toast1:
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2019
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  5. SunPa

    SunPa Platinum IL'ite

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    Thank you Dr.S, for that detailed reply - eases my mind a bit.

    Actually it is for my daughter, who wants to travel alone to visit a friend's family. This is her first Sem at UIUC, she has been there for less than 2 weeks. ( her first snow experience too) , so I kinda worried.

    It's a red state and that worries me a bit - especially if there are the "rough" clientele you mention
     
  6. sokanasanah

    sokanasanah IL Hall of Fame

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    A MAGA hat should take care of that!
    I was actually thinking of the baggy-pants butt 'n underwear crowd. The sort that stands at bus stops spitting right where they stand. :smash2:
    But never mind me. I'm precociously growing into my filter-kaapi/Hindu newspaper persona muttering about how everyone should be shot. :facepalm:
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2019
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  7. Srama

    Srama Finest Post Winner

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    @SunPa ,

    Ask her to be a little vigilant and take care of herself and her belongings. She should be fine. I have had a couple of friends travel by bus in the region and never heard of any bad stories.

    It is just a two hour ride, it is okay!
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2019
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  8. Viswamitra

    Viswamitra IL Hall of Fame

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    @SunPa,

    I have no experience of riding in the bus leave alone in the snow. I live in beautiful Sunshine State. We call it occasionally wagging tail of the US when we face hurricanes. I think Soka covered most I wanted to say here.

    But based on knowledge I gained from others who traveled by bus interstate, I share my indirect knowledge.

    1) She needs to be more watchful in the terminals than the bus itself as it is frequented by those who are not actually traveling anywhere. She had to reach only a few minutes before departure or remain in safe place while waiting for the bus to depart. Similarly, she needs to leave immediately after she reaches her destination.

    2) She needs to keep her bag always at her sight either underneath her seat or on the top on the opposite side so that she can see it.

    3) Valuables need to be kept always in person than in the bag.

    4) Two hour journey is not a lot and she can keep herself engaged in some music.

    5) She needs to be casual unaffected by the surrounding inside the bus and remain calm. She needs to appear confident and pretend that she did this kind of travel a lot. Engage in limited conversation only when someone starts a conversation. Phone to be stored away in the pocket or in the bag. Text only before departure and after arrival to you.

    6) Sometimes, the buses are with limited passengers which itself might be intimidating. Occupy an isle seat in the front of the bus, if possible.

    7) Lot of winter clothes to handle the weather, if she needs to wait outside under bad weather.

    I wish her a safe trip.

    Viswa
     
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  9. kkrish

    kkrish IL Hall of Fame

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    @SunPa
    Thanks for tagging me ma, I have no experience traveling by bus.
    i am sorry I am of no help here.
     
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  10. nuss

    nuss Platinum IL'ite

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    Urbana-Champaign to Indy is a preysafe route. As far as I remember my bus experience (Greyhound) from a decade ago, people might seem a bit rough but most are nice people. A few things to keep in mind:
    1. Her luggage will be in the storage compartment underneath the bus (most probably). Don’t pack valuables in the luggage.
    2. Nice headphones and music would help.
    3. Snow is not a problem since these states are well equipped with snow removal.
    UCIC-Indy and UCIC-Chicago are well connected routes, there shouldn’t be any issues.
    4. If she hasn’t booked the tickets yet, she might want to check airport shuttle or ride share.

    I went to Purdue and have made that drive to UCIC a few times, it’s not the most beautiful drive but most of it is through towns, so don’t worry she will be fine.
     
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