What a fun adventure I had with this lovely monopoly!
I started my adventure on February 20th, 2008 when I purchased a ticket for travel from Norfolk, Va to Hartford, Ct. I chose the non-refundable purchase option because it saved me ten dollars and I had no intention of canceling my travel as I plan things carefully on most occasions and, after three years of military service, know how to be somewhere on time.
I showed up an hour early, picked up my ticket, and got on the bus.... so far so good. The driver was more polite than most have been in my experience, there were not many travelers, so I had the seat to myself and I settled in for a 12 hour ride to visit friends and family back home in Connecticut where I was born and raised.
The fun started about 15 minutes before we arrived in New York City Port Authority as the driver casually informed us that all outgoing buses were canceled until further notice due to weather conditions. To be fair it was indeed snowing and icing the roads over and driving conditions were difficult at best. This, however was not where the rip-off occurred as the situation was still fully salvageable. The fun got into full swing when I debarked the bus and walked in to inquire as to what alternate arrangements could be made to honor the passage I had paid for in good faith.
The answer was short and simple. "Come back tomorrow and maybe we can get you a bus then." They did not ask if I had friends or family in New York City, they did not offer me a meal to wait out the storm as most reputable travel companies do. They did not offer lodging or even go so far as to suggest any alternate means of travel. Needless to say, I was a bit upset about this.
After waiting for nearly three hours for them to give me a better idea of when we could leave New York,I went to the ticket counter to ask for,at the very least, a partial refund on my ticket. The answer was a flat out "No, you purchased a non-refundable ticket and can't get a refund of any kind".
Now, I'm not a lawyer but I'm fairly certain that "non-refundable" does not give the issuer the right to cancel the trip out from under the purchaser. After throwing out a few "colorful metaphors", I decided to take a walk to the Amtrak Station (It should be noted I had to ask a Police Officer where it was as none of the employees knew where the Amtrak Station was.... I know, I know, Penn Station is small and not many New York residents know where it is, my fault for not researching it)
Well, had I gone there two hours earlier, I would have still made it in time to catch a train but it seems a lot of Greyhound Travelers knew what was happening right away and got there first.
So, I purchased a 55 dollar ticket that I waited for nearly 6 hours for the nest available seat.
After arriving in Hartford, Ct., I attempted to call the Greyhoud Corporate office and got much the same answers as the New York City station gave me. Non-refundable.
I filed a complaint on the Better Business Bureau website to which they have not even dignified me with a response. After reviewing the "unsatisfactory" record on the website I am hardly surprised so now I am writing reports and sharing my experiences with everyone who will listen in the hopes that perhaps some person in the office will realize that if my report dissuades even 2 people from purchasing tickets of 70 dollars for travel it will cost them more than it would for them to refund my ticket that I paid $85.50 for.
I encourage anyone reading this to review the listing for greyhound bus lines (Texas is the corporate office) and judge for yourself how much it appears they care about their customers. DO NOT purchase any tickets from Greyhound (they also own Peter Pan Lines and Carolina Trailways that I know of, research if your bus line is owned by them and make sure to let them know that you will not have any dealing with them so long as they operate under Greyhounds authority)
You will see for yourself that almost half the time they do not even reply to complaints. They will screw you any way they can and should not be given money for taking this stance with their consumers.
As long as we keep buying their tickets they will never change. Hurt their profits to get their attention. Just because we want to pay less for our travel does not give them the right to treat us like cargo.
This is how big business treats a Veteran? Tell them what you think of that
Sage Corliss USN (Ret)
Virginia Beach, Virginia