Travel the Country Without Ever Setting Foot in a Car

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The American Intercity Bus Riders Association (AIBRA) has created a map showing travelers how to get around the United States without ever needing a car.  The highly detailed map shows Amtrak train, Greyhound bus, and other public transportation routes.  In theory, a passenger could travel from any two major points in the United States solely using public transportation.  The map shows blue lines for Amtrak, gray and green for Greyhound, and red, orange, pink, and and a grey-brown for all other bus carriers.

The map is complex, gathering bus and train route information from a host of carriers.  For those that want more detail about bus route changes, AIBRA has a change log.  There’s also an analysis page with information about how communities would be affected in their linkage to the rest of the United States if certain bus routes were removed.


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AIBRA’s purpose of its “organization and website is to promote use, continue fostering a positive perception, and encourage future expansion of the current intercity bus system in the contiguous United States of America.” AIBRA makes two other maps available via its website: the Express Bus Map showing express bus routes across the country, and the Airport Shuttle Map Index showing local access to airports.

The map: Contiguous map of train and bus routes 

map-transit-united-states

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1 thought on “Travel the Country Without Ever Setting Foot in a Car”

  1. How many places are served by train or bus but only at stops or stations isolated and/or inconspicuous, and utterly lacking in local public transit? Greyhound used to stop in downtown Kankakee, IL, at the Amtrak station. Then it cut time and the expense of local stop-and-go driving by stopping at a gas station at the most rural of the interstate exits anywhere near Kankakee. No public transit, no shelter if the gas station is closed, not even a sign to indicate that this is where to pick up or drop off your traveler.

    Amtrak used to stop in both downtown Minneapolis and downtown St. Paul, both of them with plenty of nearby amenities for through travelers as well as local public transit for those beginning or ending their trips. Then it consolidated service at a single stop. Rather than favoring either downtown depot, it set up shop in a freight yard: centrally isolated, with no amenities, and ill-served, if, finally, at all, but public transit.

    The assumption that getting to the Amtrak or bus stop *for* a place is the same as getting to the place itself, and that getting to the place itself can be done without a car, sounds like the conclusion of someone who isn’t very familiar with the highly variable workings of buses and trains nationwide.

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