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Via Garibaldi 8

Express Bus Survey

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Well I stayed in the city last night and took the express bus home this morning.  To my surprise there was an (MTA) employee handing out surveys.  I found the questions to be odd. It asked questions such as the following:

 

-How many one-way trips did you take in the past 7 days?

-If you transferred to the express bus using another mode?

-If you transferred to another mode once you deboarded the express bus?

-If this bus wasn't available, what means would you use to complete your trip? Express bus, local bus, car, MNRR, etc.

-Zip code?

-What stop you were getting off?

-The closest stop to your final destination?

-Age range?

-Sex?

-Ethnicity?

-Race?

-If you were born in the US?

-Household Income?

-Primary language?

-How proficient you were in the main language you used?

-What language you preferred to receive future communications?

 

It had to be the most bizarre express bus survey I've ever received.  The last one I filled out was on Staten Island and it wasn't anything close to this one.

I thought it would ask about on-time performance and things of that nature.  It was fitting that my bus was almost 20 minutes late and we arrived almost 30 minutes behind schedule.   <_<

When I took the express bus back to the city later, there was no (MTA) personnel handing out surveys.

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I feel like the survey cares about the fourth question. Still, that is somewhat interesting that they're giving these surveys out. I wouldn't know because I'm not taking the express bus.

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I feel like the survey cares about the fourth question. Still, that is somewhat interesting that they're giving these surveys out. I wouldn't know because I'm not taking the express bus.

I know.  Since I was riding the BxM1, I put that I would take the BxM2, which I do use here and there, but I use MNRR more than either the BxM1 or the BxM2 at times.  I don't want to give them any ideas about cutting service.  This survey was given specifically by (MTA) Bus, and I think they're looking at ridership patterns and demographics to understand how people are using the express buses.  

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Well I stayed in the city last night and took the express bus home this morning.  To my surprise there was an (MTA) employee handing out surveys.  I found the questions to be odd. It asked questions such as the following:

 

-How many one-way trips did you take in the past 7 days?

-If you transferred to the express bus using another mode?

-If you transferred to another mode once you deboarded the express bus?

-If this bus wasn't available, what means would you use to complete your trip? Express bus, local bus, car, MNRR, etc.

-Zip code?

-What stop you were getting off?

-The closest stop to your final destination?

-Age range?

-Sex?

-Ethnicity?

-Race?

-If you were born in the US?

-Household Income?

-Primary language?

-How proficient you were in the main language you used?

-What language you preferred to receive future communications?

 

It had to be the most bizarre express bus survey I've ever received.  The last one I filled out was on Staten Island and it wasn't anything close to this one.

I thought it would ask about on-time performance and things of that nature.  It was fitting that my bus was almost 20 minutes late and we arrived almost 30 minutes behind schedule.   <_<

When I took the express bus back to the city later, there was no (MTA) personnel handing out surveys.

Wow...They want way to much personal info...Why they want to know you income...This looks similar to my apt lease... :D

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Wow...They want way to much personal info...Why they want to know you income...This looks similar to my apt lease... :D

Well income is important to a degree. The perception is that express bus riders tend to be affluent, but I don't think there is any data to support that.  I mean given the higher fares, it's a reasonable conclusion, and most express buses tend to run in the middle to upper middle class areas.  They certainly know the incomes of MNRR riders because there was a report a few years back released that most riders of MNRR have household incomes over 100k a year.  When they decide to increase fares, commuter passengers always see our fares increased far more than subway and local bus riders.  Apparently there is data that supports the idea that local bus riders tend to be the poorest (of course there are always exceptions - we can look at local bus riders on the Upper East Side as an example), while you have a more mixed picture for subway riders.  From income and age, you can tell a lot about your ridership base and how to market to them.    

Edited by Via Garibaldi 8

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I'm surprised they didn't email this out. I've gotten similar email surveys from the MTA. I never win the 30 day MetroCard they raffle off, though.

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Well I stayed in the city last night and took the express bus home this morning.  To my surprise there was an (MTA) employee handing out surveys.  I found the questions to be odd. It asked questions such as the following:

 

-How many one-way trips did you take in the past 7 days?

-If you transferred to the express bus using another mode?

-If you transferred to another mode once you deboarded the express bus?

-If this bus wasn't available, what means would you use to complete your trip? Express bus, local bus, car, MNRR, etc.

-Zip code?

-What stop you were getting off?

-The closest stop to your final destination?

-Age range?

-Sex?

-Ethnicity?

-Race?

-If you were born in the US?

-Household Income?

-Primary language?

-How proficient you were in the main language you used?

-What language you preferred to receive future communications?

 

It had to be the most bizarre express bus survey I've ever received.  The last one I filled out was on Staten Island and it wasn't anything close to this one.

I thought it would ask about on-time performance and things of that nature.  It was fitting that my bus was almost 20 minutes late and we arrived almost 30 minutes behind schedule.   <_<

When I took the express bus back to the city later, there was no (MTA) personnel handing out surveys.

 

They probally want to know their riders and how to make other services attractive before they cut express bus service.

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I'm surprised they didn't email this out. I've gotten similar email surveys from the MTA. I never win the 30 day MetroCard they raffle off, though.

If you won it though it would be useless since it doesn't work on express buses.

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If you won it though it would be useless since it doesn't work on express buses.

10 trip ticket

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I feel like the survey cares about the fourth question. Still, that is somewhat interesting that they're giving these surveys out. I wouldn't know because I'm not taking the express bus.

 

Wow...They want way to much personal info...Why they want to know you income...This looks similar to my apt lease... :D

 

Looks like a typical transit survey to me.

 

The idea is to get a general picture of who's using your services. So questions like income give you an idea of whether you're attracting those "choice" riders. If they don't own a car, then it shows that you're doing something right (in terms of running the transit system) that they feel it provides sufficient mobility that they don't need to deal with the hassle and expense of a car (even if they can afford it).

 

Likewise, if somebody makes a lower income, then you know that you're attracting somebody who generally has fewer options. If you cut their service, they can either continue to deal with it, they can spend more of their limited budget on taxis and/or personal vehicles, or they won't make the trip because it just won't be worth the hassle (which can also hurt their budget because that might've been an extra shift or an entire job that they can't reach because the bus doesn't run at that time).

 

Some of those other questions....ethnicity....age range...gender....you'd be surprised at how some of those things influence people's decisions on whether or not to use a certain mode of transit. For example, they say some women feel safer on the bus vs. the subway because the bus driver is there. BrooklynBus said in some cultures, riding the bus is considered low-class, and instead, they ride vans for the status. (Maybe you can create a new branch of an existing route if you see a lot of people are transferring between two bus routes to travel between two ethnically similar neighborhood or something like that). Age range, same thing: Maybe a lot of seniors or teenagers are using the bus in a certain neighborhood. Or maybe the lack of a certain age or ethnic group on the bus might indicate that there's underserved demand in some markets.

 

Well income is important to a degree. The perception is that express bus riders tend to be affluent, but I don't think there is any data to support that.  I mean given the higher fares, it's a reasonable conclusion, and most express buses tend to run in the middle to upper middle class areas.  They certainly know the incomes of MNRR riders because there was a report a few years back released that most riders of MNRR have household incomes over 100k a year.  When they decide to increase fares, commuter passengers always see our fares increased far more than subway and local bus riders.  Apparently there is data that supports the idea that local bus riders tend to be the poorest (of course there are always exceptions - we can look at local bus riders on the Upper East Side as an example), while you have a more mixed picture for subway riders.  From income and age, you can tell a lot about your ridership base and how to market to them.    

 

Percentage-wise, the fare increases are similar. It's just that in absolute terms, the increase tends to be higher because well...math. For example, the last fare hike raised the weekly express pass from $55 to $57.25, which was 4%. Meanwhile, the local bus weekly pass went from $29 to $31, which was almost 7%, and the local bus monthly pass went from $112 to $116.50, which was also about 4%.  

 

If you won it though it would be useless since it doesn't work on express buses.

 

If you add money to it, and take the local bus first, you can get on the express bus for $3.75 (honestly, you shouldn't even have to take a local bus first for it to work, but it is what it is)

 

In any case, I normally take the express bus, but one time, I found a monthly with some time left and I think I only used the express bus twice that month when I was in a hurry. For the rest of my trips, I altered my commute to take advantage of the free rides. I'm sure he'd do something similar with a local pass.

Edited by checkmatechamp13
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Well income is important to a degree. The perception is that express bus riders tend to be affluent, but I don't think there is any data to support that.  I mean given the higher fares, it's a reasonable conclusion, and most express buses tend to run in the middle to upper middle class areas.  They certainly know the incomes of MNRR riders because there was a report a few years back released that most riders of MNRR have household incomes over 100k a year.  When they decide to increase fares, commuter passengers always see our fares increased far more than subway and local bus riders.  Apparently there is data that supports the idea that local bus riders tend to be the poorest (of course there are always exceptions - we can look at local bus riders on the Upper East Side as an example), while you have a more mixed picture for subway riders.  From income and age, you can tell a lot about your ridership base and how to market to them.    

 

Looks like a typical transit survey to me.

 

The idea is to get a general picture of who's using your services. So questions like income give you an idea of whether you're attracting those "choice" riders. If they don't own a car, then it shows that you're doing something right (in terms of running the transit system) that they feel it provides sufficient mobility that they don't need to deal with the hassle and expense of a car (even if they can afford it).

 

Likewise, if somebody makes a lower income, then you know that you're attracting somebody who generally has fewer options. If you cut their service, they can either continue to deal with it, they can spend more of their limited budget on taxis and/or personal vehicles, or they won't make the trip because it just won't be worth the hassle (which can also hurt their budget because that might've been an extra shift or an entire job that they can't reach because the bus doesn't run at that time).

 

Some of those other questions....ethnicity....age range...gender....you'd be surprised at how some of those things influence people's decisions on whether or not to use a certain mode of transit. For example, they say some women feel safer on the bus vs. the subway because the bus driver is there. BrooklynBus said in some cultures, riding the bus is considered low-class, and instead, they ride vans for the status. (Maybe you can create a new branch of an existing route if you see a lot of people are transferring between two bus routes to travel between two ethnically similar neighborhood or something like that). Age range, same thing: Maybe a lot of seniors or teenagers are using the bus in a certain neighborhood. Or maybe the lack of a certain age or ethnic group on the bus might indicate that there's underserved demand in some markets.

 

 

Percentage-wise, the fare increases are similar. It's just that in absolute terms, the increase tends to be higher because well...math. For example, the last fare hike raised the weekly express pass from $55 to $57.25, which was 4%. Meanwhile, the local bus weekly pass went from $29 to $31, which was almost 7%, and the local bus monthly pass went from $112 to $116.50, which was also about 4%.  

 

 

If you add money to it, and take the local bus first, you can get on the express bus for $3.75 (honestly, you shouldn't even have to take a local bus first for it to work, but it is what it is)

 

In any case, I normally take the express bus, but one time, I found a monthly with some time left and I think I only used the express bus twice that month when I was in a hurry. For the rest of my trips, I altered my commute to take advantage of the free rides. I'm sure he'd do something similar with a local pass.

Oh ok...I nevered been apart of a bus survey.Makes sense..Thanks for the insight...VG8 and Checkmate

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Looks like a typical transit survey to me.

 

The idea is to get a general picture of who's using your services. So questions like income give you an idea of whether you're attracting those "choice" riders. If they don't own a car, then it shows that you're doing something right (in terms of running the transit system) that they feel it provides sufficient mobility that they don't need to deal with the hassle and expense of a car (even if they can afford it).

 

Likewise, if somebody makes a lower income, then you know that you're attracting somebody who generally has fewer options. If you cut their service, they can either continue to deal with it, they can spend more of their limited budget on taxis and/or personal vehicles, or they won't make the trip because it just won't be worth the hassle (which can also hurt their budget because that might've been an extra shift or an entire job that they can't reach because the bus doesn't run at that time).

 

Some of those other questions....ethnicity....age range...gender....you'd be surprised at how some of those things influence people's decisions on whether or not to use a certain mode of transit. For example, they say some women feel safer on the bus vs. the subway because the bus driver is there. BrooklynBus said in some cultures, riding the bus is considered low-class, and instead, they ride vans for the status. (Maybe you can create a new branch of an existing route if you see a lot of people are transferring between two bus routes to travel between two ethnically similar neighborhood or something like that). Age range, same thing: Maybe a lot of seniors or teenagers are using the bus in a certain neighborhood. Or maybe the lack of a certain age or ethnic group on the bus might indicate that there's underserved demand in some markets.

 

 

Percentage-wise, the fare increases are similar. It's just that in absolute terms, the increase tends to be higher because well...math. For example, the last fare hike raised the weekly express pass from $55 to $57.25, which was 4%. Meanwhile, the local bus weekly pass went from $29 to $31, which was almost 7%, and the local bus monthly pass went from $112 to $116.50, which was also about 4%.  

 

 

If you add money to it, and take the local bus first, you can get on the express bus for $3.75 (honestly, you shouldn't even have to take a local bus first for it to work, but it is what it is)

 

In any case, I normally take the express bus, but one time, I found a monthly with some time left and I think I only used the express bus twice that month when I was in a hurry. For the rest of my trips, I altered my commute to take advantage of the free rides. I'm sure he'd do something similar with a local pass.

Makes sense but I guess I'm puzzled because I think they should've asked other questions in addition to these. Furthermore, it seems odd that they've taken this long to gauge who their core ridership is.  

 

As for your other point, I would argue that perhaps the (MTA) needs to look at extending the reduced fare for seniors.  They make up a good chunk of express bus ridership in some neighborhoods, and some of them may not be able to afford the higher fares.

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This is nothing more than the MTA trying to gauge a way to push widespread cuts to express bus service. The writing is on the wall to begin with given the declining ridership but the fourth question is a dead giveaway of what the agenda is here. The rest of the questions are just them trying to figure out who is still riding these things given their wonderful efforts at meeting passenger demand. 

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If you add money to it, and take the local bus first, you can get on the express bus for $3.75 (honestly, you shouldn't even have to take a local bus first for it to work, but it is what it is)

Wait are you serious about this?

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Wait are you serious about this?

I'm not sure what he's talking about but as far as I know, you still would pay $6.50 total... $2.75 to take the local bus and then the difference is subtracted when you get on the express bus of $3.75.  

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I'm not sure what he's talking about but as far as I know, you still would pay $6.50 total... $2.75 to take the local bus and then the difference is subtracted when you get on the express bus of $3.75.  

 

I think what he's saying is that if you add 3.75 on a normal unlimited, you can use that 3.75 for the express bus and the farebox will treat the unlimited as the 2.75 portion.

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I'm not sure what he's talking about but as far as I know, you still would pay $6.50 total... $2.75 to take the local bus and then the difference is subtracted when you get on the express bus of $3.75.  

 

I think what he's saying is that if you add 3.75 on a normal unlimited, you can use that 3.75 for the express bus and the farebox will treat the unlimited as the 2.75 portion.

 

Kind of....the way you described is how I believe it should work. In practice, however it works like this:

 

If I added some cash to a normal unlimited, and took the X17, $6.50 would be deducted from that MetroCard (even though it has a local bus/subway unlimited on it)

 

If I took the S44 to the X17, it would be valid on the S44 like normal, and then it would take a transfer from the S44 to the X17 and only charge the step-up fare of $3.75.

 

So in other words, it's the transfer that ends up being valid as a credit towards the fare, not the actual unlimited (even though I know when you dip an unlimited, it just says "XFer OK"

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I think what he's saying is that if you add 3.75 on a normal unlimited, you can use that 3.75 for the express bus and the farebox will treat the unlimited as the 2.75 portion.

Now that it's clear what "it" is being referred to that makes sense. I can't confirm that arrangement since I've never done that before.

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I'm not sure what he's talking about but as far as I know, you still would pay $6.50 total... $2.75 to take the local bus and then the difference is subtracted when you get on the express bus of $3.75.  

 

 

I think what he's saying is that if you add 3.75 on a normal unlimited, you can use that 3.75 for the express bus and the farebox will treat the unlimited as the 2.75 portion.

 

 

Kind of....the way you described is how I believe it should work. In practice, however it works like this:

 

If I added some cash to a normal unlimited, and took the X17, $6.50 would be deducted from that MetroCard (even though it has a local bus/subway unlimited on it)

 

If I took the S44 to the X17, it would be valid on the S44 like normal, and then it would take a transfer from the S44 to the X17 and only charge the step-up fare of $3.75.

 

So in other words, it's the transfer that ends up being valid as a credit towards the fare, not the actual unlimited (even though I know when you dip an unlimited, it just says "XFer OK"

I never knew unlimited allow thats, does that include Transit Chek cards too?

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Now that it's clear what "it" is being referred to that makes sense. I can't confirm that arrangement since I've never done that before.

 

I can confirm what he's saying. I always use that method as well.

 

When you add cash fare into an unlimited, and use the card on a local bus, you can use the card on the local bus(it'll be used as an unlimited) and then when you use it on the express bus, it'll count as a transfer by way of a $3.75 deduction.

 

 

I never knew unlimited allow thats, does that include Transit Chek cards too?

 
As far as I'm aware, no.
Edited by Cait Sith

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As far as I'm aware, no.

Well that sucks,

 

But 3 things the MTA needs to do, 

 

1) Charge $3.75 for Express bus ride for those with unlimited cards 

2) Allow express bus cards to work on Air Train. 

3) Bring back Express monthly.

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Well that sucks,

 

But 3 things the MTA needs to do, 

 

1) Charge $3.75 for Express bus ride for those with unlimited cards 

2) Allow express bus cards to work on Air Train. 

3) Bring back Express monthly.

 

AirTrain would have to be on the Port Authority's side, and there's no real logic to that anyways.

 

Do JFK employees get discounts or free AirTrain usage?

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AirTrain would have to be on the Port Authority's side, and there's no real logic to that anyways.

 

Do JFK employees get discounts or free AirTrain usage?

Negative. We pay the same price as passengers do.
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AirTrain would have to be on the Port Authority's side, and there's no real logic to that anyways.

 

Do JFK employees get discounts or free AirTrain usage?

 

A monthly AirTrain pass is $40: http://www.panynj.gov/airports/jfk-cost-tickets.html

 

So if you're making the trip on a regular basis (basically, once a week or more), it just pays to get the monthly.

 

I heard there's some people who buy a monthly pass so they can use the AirTrain from Howard Beach to Jamaica, since it's quicker/more reliable than the local bus.

Edited by checkmatechamp13

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I heard there's some people who buy a monthly pass so they can use the AirTrain from Howard Beach to Jamaica, since it's quicker/more reliable than the local bus.

 

That is a pretty smart move

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