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New Bus Line Enters Arena of Cheap Routes to NYC -- DC Examiner
2007-07-23
WASHINGTON (Map, News) - The already crowded field of bus operators providing low-priced service between the District of Columbia and New York City will have a little less elbow room when a new line begins running Thursday.
DC2NY is attempting to stand out from the myriad other companies, including Vamoose and Washington Deluxe, by offering a complimentary beverage upon boarding and free wireless Internet access. Round trip fares start at $40 for customers with reservations in advance — or about $5 more than what other companies generally charge. It is also touting direct service to New York, with stops in Dupont Circle and McPherson Square in D.C. and at Pennsylvania Station in New York. It is scheduled to begin service Thursday.

Travelers who lined up outside a Starbucks on K Street last week to take the Washington Deluxe to New York had mixed reactions about the new service. What mattered most was the cheap fare all the buses offer, especially considering tolls and rising gas prices.

“As long as it’s safe and it gets me there, it’s all right with me,” said McDonald Julian, who lives on Benning Road and travels frequently on the “Chinatown” buses — a moniker taken because several of the original lines were started by Chinese-American families to travel between the D.C. and New York neighborhoods with the same name.

Alexandra Gray, of downtown, said she was taking the bus on the recommendation of a friend despite horror stories of side-of-the-road breakdowns and failed air conditioning. She said Internet access on the new line would be a “great attraction,” worth paying an extra $5 for.

DC2NY’s owners could not be identified through its Web site.

Florence Bluzenstein, a co-owner of the Vamoose bus that runs between New York, Bethesda and Arlington, said the market for travelers between both cities is so large that she is not worried that DC2NY would affect her business.

cmabeus@dcexaminer.com