Transport options between Vancouver and Seattle will be bolstered from next month with a new high-cost intercity bus operated by FlixBus.
The service announced earlier this week was originally scheduled to launch on Thursday, May 26, but Sean Hanft, a spokesperson for FlixBus, told Daily Hive Urbanized that the launch has been delayed to Thursday, June 2 due to unforeseen, last-minute regulatory issues.
As a result, the first available date for travel bookings is June 2, with fares starting at $18.00 each way, excluding a service fee and optional extra baggage and seat selection fees. For some perspective, this fare is much lower than the cost of an average Uber ride through the city of Vancouver.
FlixBus’ Vancouver-Seattle service will initially run in each direction five days a week on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays.
The Vancouver stop is on Richards Street outside Waterfront Station in downtown Vancouver, while the Seattle stop is at the intersection of 6th Avenue and S Lane Street in downtown Seattle – near King Street Station, Lumen Field, and T-Mobile Park.
Buses to Seattle depart from Waterfront Station at 12:45 PM and arrive at 3:55 PM, and buses to Vancouver depart downtown Seattle at 7:30 AM, arriving shortly before noon.
En route in both directions, the bus also stops at Pacific Central Station near downtown Vancouver, and in Bellingham and Everett.
FlixBus’ Vancouver-Seattle service uses new coaches, with passenger amenities such as free Wi-Fi, power outlets for every seat and technical solutions using the FlixBus smartphone app.
The ultra-low-cost intercity bus company also launched a Canadian domestic route network in Ontario in April and a cross-border route between Toronto and New York City earlier this month.
In October 2021, FlixBus, an international intercity transportation giant based in Munich, spent $78 million to acquire Greyhound, which has struggled with the collapse of the travel demand pandemic and the prolonged closure of the US-Canada border. .
Greyhound’s Canadian division closed its doors permanently in May 2021 amid mounting financial losses. Greyhound’s Canadian division withdrew its operations in British Columbia and Alberta as early as October 2018, with the company stating at the time that this was due to declining rider numbers and increased competition. In response, the BC Provincial Government launched BC Bus North’s public intercity bus services in June 2018 to fill some of the key inter-community transportation gaps as a direct result of Greyhound’s withdrawal.
Greyhound continues to operate in the United States, with FlixBus now added as an ultra-low-cost option.
In November 2021, Greyhound resumed some of its major bus routes between Canada and the US, including Vancouver-Seattle, Toronto-Buffalo and Montreal-New York City.
In addition to flying to and from major international airports, other options between Vancouver and Seattle include Amtrak’s daily passenger train service. But Amtrak said earlier this month it wouldn’t be able to resume this route until late 2022 at the earliest due to a labor shortage.
Also earlier this month, Harbor Air resumed its seaplane flight route between Coal Harbor in downtown Vancouver and Lake Union near downtown Seattle. It has at least one scheduled flight per day.