For my trip to Houston from Austin, I considered flying but I gave up when I saw fares at $300++. I wanted to drive but the rental cars in Austin weren’t cheap for my dates and there was a hefty one-way fee. So why not take the bus? Megabus has been growing like crazy over the last few years and I was curious to try it.
Megabus has a little city terminal in Austin right behind the Capitol. It is cooled down to 70 degrees which is a godsend in Texas in summer. A friendly attendant helped check everyone in and I later realized this would be our driver once the bus arrived from San Antonio.
It was enough to show my email confirmation as the attendant just checked it against his list. I had bought a ticket for only $10 and added an assigned seat for $2. I thought it was a mistake fare but no, it wasn’t – those are normal Megabus fares!
The bus was almost full to capacity. The seats downstairs are spacious but there were four people at my assigned table. It’s still a good seat when you want to use your laptop but it is not ideal.
To my surprise the freeway we took from Austin to Houston was rather just a small town lane variant so there was plenty of slowing down and accelerating. Nevertheless, the time went by quickly as the bus had speedy WiFi – much faster than my Skyroam that I had brought with me. Despite the sparse population (and few cell towers) the WiFi didn’t fall under 4 Mbit for most of the ride. I was also seemingly the only person using it (at least on the lower deck).
Three hours later and we pulled into downtown Houston (there was just one short stop outside the city first, to fill up and switch drivers).
I was very happy with my trip. It took less time and was infinitely cheaper than flying and I could walk to both bus stops in both cities without needing a $20 Uber. If I started a city-city bus company in the US, I would make it exactly like Megabus.