The trip to Long Island has now become easier for Cornellians. OurBus, a transportation service that operates in the area, has added a year-round route between Ithaca and Long Island, with stops along the North Shore of Long Island.
The route runs on Fridays and Sundays, with extra trips added for school breaks and holidays to accommodate all passengers. The new route starts in Ithaca and makes stops in Binghamton, Paramus, Manhasset, Melville, Islandia and finally Calverton, a Suffolk County town located near the Hamptons.
Rather than owning or operating buses, OurBus matches popular routes with charter bus companies, in coordination with spikes in demand.
In the past, OurBus only offered trips between Ithaca and Long Island near holidays and school breaks. The weekend route was added because of students’ request for a more regular schedule, Samantha Matuke grad, planning and operations associate for OurBus, told The Sun in an email.
Some Cornell students from Long Island have already bought tickets because of the convenience of the new route and the upcoming February break. Jibran Gilani ’20 was one of those students.
“The final stop is incredibly close to my house, which makes it a lot more convenient than stopping at Port Authority Bus Terminal,” Gilani told The Sun. “This prevents carrying around luggage from Port Authority to the subways and then Penn Station and the LIRR, which costs extra as well.”
When Eli Serrano ’20 took the bus home, she would have to take the bus to New York City, and then transfer to the Long Island Rail Road.
“[The transfer] added a lot of time to my trip,” Serrano told The Sun.
The University, which is reevaluating their permitting process, has yet to give OurBus permission to pick up students directly from campus, according to Matuke. The service currently collects passengers from the Green Street Pharmacy, which has been Ithaca’s primary regional bus hub since last year’s closure of the Ithaca Bus Depot.
OurBus also offers routes to New York City, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and Allentown, Pennsylvania.
In the future, OurBus hopes to provide regular service between Ithaca and Boston as well. OurBus prices from Ithaca to Long Island currently start at $25, according to OurBus’s website.