Megabus rolls into Charlotte

Published: Dec. 15, 2010 at 10:19 PM EST|Updated: Dec. 15, 2010 at 10:37 PM EST
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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - When those who have heard of Megabus before heard it was coming to Charlotte, you could sense their excitement.

However, many people in the Charlotte-area never heard of these low-cost bus trips.

Megabus is trying to change that.  The first bus rolled into town Wednesday.  This division of Coach, USA will now offer three daily trips to Washington, DC stopping in Raleigh-Durham and Richmond, Virginia along the way.

However, it's not the destinations which are the big draw.  It's the price.

Megabus prides itself on offering the lowest fares when compared to it's competition.  It claims it's ticket prices start at $1, with prices increasing depending on how close to the date of travel you buy, and on demand.

"Our draw is low cost, express trips and reliable service," said John Emberson with Coach, USA.

The bus is the same as any bus in which you might travel out of town.  There's free wifi on board and outlets at every seat to plug in electronics.  In order to make money, and stay in business, Megabus simply has to get a person in every seat for every trip.  That's why the price of a ticket is based on demand.

"Our goal is to fill up the bus. So if the bus is busy we don't discount fares as much but if its not busy we discount the fares," Emberson said.

Tom and Connie Richardson tried Megabus on it's debut day.  They couldn't remember the last time they traveled by bus.

"We're just recently retired and we're looking for adventure so this a new adventure for us and an inexpensive one at that," Connie said.

The total cost for the Richardsons round-trip tickets to Washington, DC was $18.50.

Tickets to ride Megabus can only be purchased online.  For more information about Megabus, click here.

The bus company is giving away 200,000 free seats for travel January 12 through March 1 of 2011.  Travelers will need to use the promo code WOW200K to book their free seats.