Startups
Transportation / Universities

OurBus is launching in Newark with a focus on UD students

The NYC-based platform is adding a bus route from Newark to New York. Here's what the service offers and how to use it.

A new way to travel between Newark, Del., and NYC. (Photo by Pexels user Lê Minh, used under a Creative Commons license)

New York tech company OurBus is launching its first Delaware route on Aug. 31, giving University of Delaware students and area residents access to its crowdsourced inter-city bus service.

For $25 (or less, if you buy a virtual pack of 10 tickets), you can ride to NYC in a charter bus, equipped with WiFi, charging stations, pre-loaded movies and restrooms, as well as the ability to track the bus on the app (one of the OurBus cofounders, Narinder Singh, is also a cofounder of AppAlert, a school bus tracking app for parents).

While OurBus has similarities with Uber, its model is different. Individuals can’t sign up to be freelance drivers, for one. Instead, OurBus works directly with charter bus companies, matching available buses (and their professional drivers) to their routes.

To use the service, download the OurBus app and enter your trip info, and it will show you available times and rates you can select, similar to a travel app like Expedia (or MegaBus, which also runs a bus service from Newark). There are no paper tickets involved, and payment must be made via the app.

In Newark, the OurBus departs from the Route 896 & Route 4 Park and Ride. Because the service is app-based, you may not see any signage for OurBus at the bus stop (just so you know).

OurBus already has routes between New York City and a handful of cities in the Mid-Atlantic, including Philadelphia, West Chester, Lancaster, Washington, D.C., Columbia, Md., Syracuse and Ithaca, as well as routes in Florida.

Reviews on Yelp, TripAdvisor and TrustPilot vary — users are not dealing with the same bus companies in many cases, so consistent service isn’t a given. Then again, the fares are cheaper than driving to NYC, and you can play Rocket Rambler the whole way.

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