Alternative Driving

A few months back my sister took the train down for a weekend visit. She loves the train, relaxing while reading, not worrying about parking or traffic or the boring boring boring three-hour drive down I-5 (the Gospodor Monument an exception). The rail ride is scenic, comfortable, and worry-free unless the train breaks and you get stuck on the ‘hound after a three hour station wait while the train mechanics decide your weeked getaway fate. She texted updates of disgust “stuck in the back with poop smells.”

Her decision to leave the car behind was not based on savings, a train ticket costs anywhere between $32 and $53 each way, depending on the day and time of your trip. Driving is far cheaper, unless you are renting the car.

A bus ticket will run between $19 and $41, until May 17th.

That is the date that BoltBus makes its west coast debut. Ticket prices are based on demand and range from $1 to above $20, but most of the fares seemed to fall between $8 and $13. The stations are not stations but curbsides, with pickup in downtown Portland on Salmon and in downtown Seattle on King Street in Chinatown.

Which is only a 15 minute walk from Safeco field, where will be giving out Ichiro bendy figurines on June 9th. You can spend $14 round-trip on the bus (if you get the $1 return fare home) and between $20 and $270 to get your bendy. The cheap seats, with BoltBus, is still less half the cost of the Cascade train. No guarantee there won’t be poop smell.