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New overnight bus service between Santa Monica and San Francisco

New overnight bus service between Santa Monica and San Francisco

Old Apr 19, 16, 7:46 pm
  #1  
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New overnight bus service between Santa Monica and San Francisco

http://www.sleepbus.co/

Here's an article about it: http://www.inc.com/tess-townsend/sle...la-for-50.html

It appears to use custom configured tractor trailers and stacks people in three-high pods, although the article says they use Volvo sleeper coaches. The "bus" departs at 11 pm nightly and arrives at 6 am, with sleepers getting evicted at 7:30. The cost is $48 to start and $65 permanently.

The Santa Monica location is a bit out of the way from most of Los Angeles, but might be good for Silicon Beach, and would have good connections to LAX via the Flyaway and to Downtown via the Expo Line when that opens in May. The San Francisco location at Caltrain is also less than ideal, but is connected to Silicon Valley and SFO/SJC that way so could be useful for open jaws.

One issue I could see is the unbalanced demand. You might get good demand Thursday, Friday, and Sunday nights. Many times the Night Coast bus (San Jose to San Luis Obispo/Santa Barbara and continuing on via the Pacific Surfliner to Los Angeles) sells out. Recently the 2 am San Joaquin bus from LA-Bakersfield has sold out as well on these nights, as my friend who made an unexpected trip to Disneyland discovered (no overnight northbound options other than the Greyhound local through the Central Valley). The other nights will have very few riders.
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Old Apr 19, 16, 7:52 pm
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Very cool. Wish they went all the way to SAN. If no other reason, more time to sleep

And cheaper than a hotel
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Old Apr 20, 16, 5:43 pm
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Interesting. At least a step up from the Megabus (better L.A. location and cheaper fare notwithstanding).
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Old Apr 21, 16, 1:03 pm
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Hope this succeeds. Biggest question for me is how to shower/iron clothes upon arrival.
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Old Apr 21, 16, 1:32 pm
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Originally Posted by davie355 View Post
Hope this succeeds. Biggest question for me is how to shower/iron clothes upon arrival.
Obviously, if you have status, you can use the arrivals lounge.
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Old May 18, 16, 11:44 am
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This service is apparently designed for techies, who may not be as sensitive to the absence of showers.
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Old May 23, 16, 3:14 pm
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Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
Very cool. Wish they went all the way to SAN. If no other reason, more time to sleep

And cheaper than a hotel
Agreed. I would totally do this!
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Old Jul 6, 17, 12:08 am
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This service is back in the news.
http://www.sfweekly.com/news/suckafr...p-bus-is-back/

Now $115+ one way. Still no showers.
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Old Jul 6, 17, 4:00 pm
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Is there a community that would pay to do $115 one way when a one-way flight between the major LA and SF airports can often be found for about $50? Even a premium economy seat is usually less than $115.... I suppose if you're booking last minute this might save money?
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Old Jul 6, 17, 5:19 pm
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Originally Posted by ryw View Post
Is there a community that would pay to do $115 one way when a one-way flight between the major LA and SF airports can often be found for about $50? Even a premium economy seat is usually less than $115.... I suppose if you're booking last minute this might save money?
I don't see many $50 fares, if ever, anymore, when I want to travel. But the $115 is about half the last minute fares.

The community might consist of those who don't want themselves or their belongings to go through a TSA checkpoint or baggage screening.
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Old Jul 7, 17, 12:23 am
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Originally Posted by Eastbay1K View Post
I don't see many $50 fares, if ever, anymore, when I want to travel. But the $115 is about half the last minute fares.

The community might consist of those who don't want themselves or their belongings to go through a TSA checkpoint or baggage screening.
Fair points. I suppose it is rarer to find a $50 (quick Google flight search shows a fair number of flights in the $60-$70 range for 2+ weeks out which isn't too bad, but could see someone doing the bus over a last minute fare). With my travel patterns I doubt I'd ever use this, but I guess I can see that there might be enough people who would do this that it would work, especially if that's the only route they're running.

(If they ran a route over a longer distance than 6 hours, like a 10 hour SFO-LAS or SFO-PDX, I might be tempted to try it once!)
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Old Jul 7, 17, 3:11 pm
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Yes ~10 hours would be the perfect length. Well-rested passengers are happier passengers. Cities with faraway airports (relative to downtown) would presumably yield the greatest demand, assuming the bus stop is in the city center.
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Old Jul 7, 17, 8:30 pm
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Originally Posted by ryw View Post
Is there a community that would pay to do $115 one way when a one-way flight between the major LA and SF airports can often be found for about $50? Even a premium economy seat is usually less than $115.... I suppose if you're booking last minute this might save money?
Well, Vonlane operates in Texas (yes, this is CA forum), and they don't even offer lie flat, just 2x1 airline Biz type seats and are charging about $100 for trips between Austin, San Antonio, Dallas and Houston.

Someone is using them, as they recently expanded service

These are much shorter distances IIRC than SFO to SM, but we don't see $60 one way fares between these cities either. So someone is probably using this service in CA as well.
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Old Aug 4, 17, 1:11 pm
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NPR:
Could A Bus With Sleep Pods Replace Airplanes?

Excerpt:
Part 2 starts at 11 p.m., when I board my Cabin in Santa Monica. The ground floor has table seating, kind of like the dining car in a train. The upper level, however, is like nothing I've ever seen before. On each side of the walkway, there are beds — several across, and stacked in two like bunk beds, only built into the bus.

They're called pods, and crawling into one is jarring. It's not high enough to sit up in, so you have to crawl. And once inside, it feels like being in a cabinet or a coffin (you pick). I inch my way into a top pod, trying not to make noise because a mother and her little girl are sharing the pod below me...

***

When we pull into a parking lot in San Francisco, I realize I've been out 7.5 hours (way more than usual)... You may be wondering how I slept for so long, since LA to San Francisco is only a six-hour drive. Well, to guarantee a full night's rest, the creators of Cabin turned it into eight hours — by driving slower and using back roads.
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Old Aug 4, 17, 8:30 pm
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Originally Posted by ryw View Post
Is there a community that would pay to do $115 one way when a one-way flight between the major LA and SF airports can often be found for about $50? Even a premium economy seat is usually less than $115.... I suppose if you're booking last minute this might save money?
In addition to reasons given by others above, there is this: a nontrivial number of people are scared of flying.
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