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Intercity Bus Line Fares  
User currently offlineMcdougald From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (13 years 10 months 4 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 995 times:

I've noticed that intercity bus lines like Greyhound tend to base their fares by number of miles traveled. For example, a trip to a city 100 miles away will cost about twice as much to a city 50 miles away. One could save by buying an advance-purchase ticket, but the off-peak times seem to be priced the same as during peak periods.

Fair enough if it works for them. But would they be more competitive with the car and low-cost airlines if they adopted some form of yield management? For instance, prices would better reflect supply and demand if tweaked according to the percentage of available seat miles available between any two places. It could also improve yields on city-pairs that sell out and increase traffic on streches of highway or at times of day when buses are empty.

Given that the buses were providing low-cost, no-frills transportation long before the discount airlines came along, why haven't they taken up more of the airlines' pricing strategies?

3 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlinePROSA From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 5644 posts, RR: 4
Reply 1, posted (13 years 10 months 4 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 986 times:

One complicating factor is that some states subsidize certain intercity bus fares. I believe this is more common in rural areas, especially those far from commercial airports.

"Let me think about it" = the coward's way of saying "no"
User currently offlineMls515 From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 3081 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (13 years 10 months 4 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 977 times:

The intercity bus lines do have a lot to learn from the airline industry. Although in most of the US, the only bus lines are members of the trailways group and Greyhound. And many of the destinations are served by no other scheduled carrier.

I don't know if yield management would work quite the same way for the bus lines either, because if the last minute fares were too high the potential customer would just drive their own car to the destination. Airlines can get away with it because their mode of transportation isn't as comparable to an automobile.

User currently offlineDelta-flyer From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 2682 posts, RR: 6
Reply 3, posted (13 years 10 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 963 times:

The intercity bus market caters primarily to people who have no other travel options, and not much money. The way yield management works is if the market is segmented, and you can differentiate between different types of clients. I don't think that is the case with bus passengers.


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