Greyhound Canada is ending all passenger bus and freight services in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and British Columbia as well as cancelling all western Canada services, except for one route in B.C. between Vancouver and Seattle. The service cuts are expected to go into effect by the end of October. When the cuts take effect, Ontario and Quebec will be the only western regions where Greyhound Canada will run.
The Company cites falling ridership, seeing a 41% decline since 2010, as the main reason for halting services in Western Canada, mainly in rural areas, as well as increasing costs, competition from subsidized national transportation services, increasing car ownership, and the growth of new low-cost airlines.
“Despite best efforts over several years, ridership has dropped nearly 41% across the country since 2010 within a changing and increasingly challenging transportation environment,” said Stuart Kendrick, Senior Vice-President of Greyhound Canada. “Simply put, we can no longer operate unsustainable routes.”
Small towns affected by the service cuts face transportation challenges as transportation services are few in the area. Elderly people will also have difficult times traveling, as many of them prefer taking the bus over driving.
“The decision is regretful and we sympathize with the fact that many small towns are going to lose service,” said Kendrick in an interview with The Canadian Press.
The service cuts will leave 415 people jobless, and is estimated to impact two Million riders.