Megabus Negligence re: Passenger Comfort, Safety

In March I had a shockingly bad MegaBus experience on various levels, and I've heard of similar from friends.

When I got home that night, I wrote a review of the experience, shared below.

I had a terrible experience on MegaBus on March 14, 2015. It was so bad I got home and wrote up my narrative of the experience that night. But, I couldn't find where on your site to even provide feedback.

Seeing today's photos of the Bolt Bus exploding on the highway, I recalled that the way the MegaBus I was on was managed, I wouldn't at all be surprised if MegaBuses were also spectacularly failing.

There is what seems an open contempt for passengers, and negligence in managing the buses, and passenger needs, particularly comfort and safety. The question is: what are you doing about it? Where is the media and where are the regulators?!

March 14, 2015 Megabus trip review:

Wow, the Megabus from Washington DC departing 5pm to NYC this evening was a cruel and unusual trip. First, on the lower level of the bus none of the electrical outlets were working. Ok, so that was annoying. But then, about halfway through the trip, the temperature on the bus cabin began rising to somewhere between 80-85 Fahrenheit. Everyone was either plugged into their electronic media, or passed out from the heat. I sat sweating like a pig for almost two hours before we finally stopped, about 30 minutes outside NYC, to change bus drivers. For the past hour or two I'd been observing my fellow passengers show signs of the heat: moist and glistening foreheads, people complaining to one another about how warm it was, etc. But no one seemed to approach the driver. Finally, I couldn't take it any more -- I felt like I would become ill -- and then the bus stopped. I went up to the departing driver and mentioned to him that the bus cabin was beyond uncomfortably warm, it was becoming unhealthily hot. He and the new bus driver both assured me the bus temperature was fine. In the driver's area it was fine. They showed me a dashboard temperature display indicating 65 Fahrenheit. I said that was clearly not the temperature in the lower level cabin, which was closer to 80 degrees, and invited them to take a quick stroll to experience it themselves. They both denied the possibility that the cabin could possibly be that warm, while therefore precluding the possibility that such a walk could possibly evidence anything but what they already knew. I thought that strange. Then they said I was the only person who had mentioned the heat. So, I turned around to the cabin and announced loudly that the bus drivers were sure that the cabin was 65 degrees, because that's what their thermometer system said. Did they agree?! A loud, plea rose up of "It's a sauna back here" "it's sweltering" "I'm sweating my *** off" "turn off the heat!!!".

The bus drivers still insisted that it's company policy, that they have absolutely no control over bus temperature, that the bus cabin temperature must be 65 because that's what their display said. Then I said they should at least open a window. They also said that the only other solution was to wait for a replacement bus, which would take a long time. So, either we shut up and take the sweltering heat, or we'd delay our arrival in NYC by at least an hour or two. This felt like some form of hellish blackmail, something out of Kafka. They also said, if I didn't like it I was free to get off the bus.

Now I saw how things were gonna go: take it or leave it (literally: leave the bus) or make the entire bus an hour or two late, but they didn't seem like they felt like they had any ability to manage the situation except to say: you're wrong and there's nothing we can do. Or, get off, or you'll simply add an hour or several to the trip.

I decided to sit down and see what happened. They opened the doors and aired out the cabin for a minute or two, which helped. By now the temperature in the cabin had come down to the mid 70s, and we shut up. The bus continued, but by the time we arrived in NYC, the temperature had almost reached the mid 80s again. When I got off the bus, I asked several other travelers who had sat on the upper level what the temperature had been up there, and they said kind of chilly, about 65 degrees.

So, to recap: Megabus drivers first deny rider's complaints of sweltering, uncomfortable temperatures. Then they deny they have any ability to manage the temperature of the bus cabin. Then they threatened complaining bus passengers that either the can get off the bus or be responsible for several hours delay in waiting for a new bus.

I wonder if any laws or industry rules and regulations were broken.

All in all, an uncomfortable, miserable ride which raised serious questions about Megabus policies, policy enforcement, driver training, and commitment to passengers comfort, safety, and respect.

This review is a subjective opinion of a user.
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Reason of review:
Poor customer service
Preferred solution:
Public redress of customer service problems.
Monetary loss:
Product or service
Bus Service
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review #634737 by

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May 13, 2015 #983988

In truth, the drivers do not have the ability to change the temperature. It was a malfunction, but the driver could not fix it or manually change the hvac. The only thing to do would actually be wait for another bus, so while I understand your frustration, there really wasn't anything for the driver to do.

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