If you think every bus ride is as cramped, crowded and crawling as the 57th Street crosstown, meet three luxury buses that have about as much in common with the MTA as Beluga caviar has with peanut butter.
Concord Coach to Portland, Maine
If your upcoming vacation plans include a trip to Maine, the Concord Coach Lines Plus Service takes you nonstop from Midtown Manhattan to Portland in six hours. You can connect to Amtrak’s Downeaster train at the Portland bus depot and explore Maine’s Southern and MidCoast regions without a car.
The bus features 2 seats on one side and a single seat on the other. These reclining seats are all spacious and comfy, each with a power outlet. There’s Wi-Fi, movies, hearty snacks and a Keurig for self-service hot beverages. There’s a restroom on board as well as a quick bathroom break at a Connecticut rest stop.
The bus departs from 42 Street between 1 and 2nd Avenue twice daily, at 8 am and 1:45 pm. There’s a Portland departure back to NYC at 6:30 am. If waking up at the crack of dawn holds little appeal, there’s a 12:15 pm Portland departure too.
It’s reservations-only, with no walk up tickets sold. Arrive early if you like to sit up front as seating is first-come, first-serve.
LimoLiner to Boston and Framingham, Massachusetts
LimoLiner is the Rolls-Royce of buses. This full-size coach is outfitted with only 28 seats so each passenger has twice the personal space as they would on a typical bus.
The four-hour ride to Boston is first-class all the way. Enjoy reclining leather seats, pillows and blankets, individual power outlets and Wi-Fi. Your on-board attendant serves a complimentary hot, cold or vegetarian meal, which you order in advance. Beverages, including wine in the evening, movies and a clean bathroom, are welcome touches.
Many passengers are LimoLiner regulars so there’s a homey, familiar feel. You book the exact seat you want when you reserve.
The bus departs from the Hilton Hotel in Midtown Manhattan. It goes directly to suburban Framingham before heading to the Sheraton Hotel in Boston’s Back Bay. There are multiple buses each day with extra buses on weekends.
Hampton Jitney to Long Island’s North and South Forks
The Hampton Jitney has been shuttling New Yorkers to Long Island since 1974. It runs dozens of coaches 365 days per year, reaching nearly every nook and cranny of the East End.
You can expect a comfortable seat and free Wi-Fi during your ride.
If that’s not lux enough, try their Ambassador Service. These buses have 30 extra-wide, 3-across seats. An attendant provides drinks, refreshments and reading material.
The Jitney makes numerous pick-up stops on Manhattan’s East Side before hitting the usually heavily trafficked LIE.
Allison is a native New Yorker, who has lived in Rome, Tuscany, Melbourne, Toronto and Los Angeles. She frequently contributes travel pieces to Family Travel Forum, using her own children as guinea pigs as they travel the globe. She is fluent in Italian and Spanish and laughably adequate in French. Her background as an Early Childhood Educator gives her an added understanding of what it takes to travel with kids in tow. She firmly believes that the most important part of education takes place outside of the classroom, on the road, around the world. She never misses a chance to sample local delicacies, as her love for travel goes hand-in-hand with her love for food and wine. Follow Allison at @gourmetrav.