Those who rely on the Greyhound in western Canada, said it’s a crucial lifeline and one they’re soon about to lose.
On Monday, the company announced service in Manitoba, Alberta, Saskatchewan and B.C. will stop at the end of October. Te exception is a single route from Vancouver to Seattle.
But the looming loss of service left many asking, what now?
“If you have to travel for personal, medical or other important reasons [people] will really depend on the kindness of strangers,” passenger Ralph Carlwushke said.
“I’m a university student and I just can’t afford flying everywhere,” another passenger Robin Fidyk said.
For one international traveler from France, on a cross-Canada road trip, the news came as a shock.
“To make a real road trip, you can’t do this in a plane,” Willy Monnier said. “It’s something that would be impossible to happen in France and in Europe because we use buses everyday.”
The news is a familiar blow to Saskatchewan residents who lost the Saskatchewan Transportation Company (STC) in 2017.
“I think that the cancellation of Greyhound as with the cancellation of the STC corporation- Saskatchewan has placed a lot of vulnerable people in difficulty,” Carlwushke said.
People like Jayne Whyte, a Regina senior, who relies on the service to visit her friends and grandchildren. Without it, Whyte said she worries about her quality of life and the ability to get around.
“I don’t drive. I’m a low income woman, so I need low income transportation,” Whyte said. “It just feels like my life is getting narrower and narrower and the possibility of staying in touch with people who are important to me gets to be less and less.”
Many, including the province, hope ride sharing companies will help fill the gap so rural and remote communities won’t be left behind.
“We won’t be providing funding for Greyhound it would be our hope that on these main routes that the private sector will have a look at these main routes,” Premier Scott Moe said.
For now it’s an uncertainty lingering in the minds of many passengers whose days are now limited.
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