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Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

Model Life

Whether it be transporting to and from New York City, flying to a different country, and/ or basically going wherever your agency wants to send you; Model life is just one big hoopla of travel.

This post will focus on Traveling to and from New York City

Traveling to and from New York City

There are five ways to get to and from New York City.

1. The Questionable Bus

2. The Palatial Train

3. The I give up and just Drive myself,

4. The Self-Indulgent Limo

5. The I’m so Rich I will just Fly

The Questionable Bus

Grimy, crowded, and uncomfortable; the bus is the cheapest way to travel to and from New York City. Ranging from $1-$45 per ticket, the bus is by far the least expensive way to travel. Depending on how far in advance you purchase your ticket will determine the total cost. If you purchase your ticket three months prior to travel – Congrats you got a ticket for a buck! Round trip for $2!!! Now that is worth the nastiness and painfulness of the bus. But since Model life is so unpredictable, you will probably never know when you have to be in New York City until the day or week before- so you will never be able to score a bus ride for a dollar.

Model Problems.

Bus Lines you can travel by:

Peter Pan/ Greyhound

Megabus

Bolt Bus

FUNG WAH

Peter Pan/Greyhound Bus Lines

Peter Pan is the best choice based on accessibility. It is the most accessible because there is parking at every location for a small fee (except in New York City), an enclosed waiting area with heat- so you do not have to stand in the cold/rain/snow (and sometimes they even have FOOD), you can purchase your tickets at the station waiting areas if you cannot do so online (but the price will be at least $20 more), AND there are outlets + WiFi on the buses. Sometimes they use the old buses that lack outlets and WiFi, which sucks.

Dropping off at The Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York City, you will exit the dirty bus and enter the magical world of New York City Transportation. There will be signs for the Subway, NJ Transit, more buses, refreshments, shops, bathrooms, and of course- the crazy people. Watch out for the crazy people.

CONS- The bathroom is honestly the most disgusting thing I have ever seen in my life. Not really, but it is disgusting. Imagine a moving porta-potty with a door that is basically impossible to open, and it seems like whenever I have to pee the bus driver decides to make sudden movements so I basically have to turn into a spider monkey in order to not take a toilet dive. Thankfully there are handy handlebars to clench onto. I really don’t want any diseases. Thank you.

There is only one level to the Peter Pan bus (Instead of 2 like the Mega Bus), meaning the bus is much more cramped and the bathroom stench travels to the riders nostrils quite quickly. The prices of Peter Pan are the highest of all the bus lines; if you were need to buy a round trip ticket to New York City for tomorrow- that would be $90 please….. UMMMMMMMM. WHAT. (Sadly this is still cheap in the scheme of things)

I think their prices are so high because they have the power of shelter, heat, and food- which most bus lines do not have. And when its 25 Degrees out in New York City, the last thing you want to be doing is waiting in line outside for a bus at midnight, so Peter Pan is worth it to be safe and warm. Not to contradict the statement above, but even though The Port Authority Bus Terminal has heat, food, and bathrooms at your disposal when wait for your bus, there are also many, many, MANY beggars.

A beggar is someone who walks up and down the lines asking for money from each and every person. They may tell you a story about how they have not eaten for three days, or tell you how they love your purse and ask if there was money in it, or they even might grab onto you and ask for help.

Just be polite and avoid problems. People are crazy. Do not get confrontational and try not to make eye contact. Safety is key people.

This one time I was waiting for the bus and a man came up to me and asked me if I was a Victoria’s Secret Model. As flattered as I was , I said “no I am not but thank you.” He replied with ” Girl you should be…. can you help a brother out and give me some dollars?” I said ” I have no cash on me. Sorry!” His response- “It’s because I’m black isn’t it. You racist B*tch.”

Just stay calm and be aware. It is all you can really do.

I WAS FIRST IN LINE BUDDY!!!!!- Peter Pan has a ludicrous rule of first come first served when it comes to their seats on the bus. Meaning that they oversell tickets for the bus ride (because they are greedy simpletons), and only the first fifty two people in line will be able to get home.

Also Known As- There are only fifty two seats on the bus, but they sold sixty tickets. Yes, you read that right, even if you purchased a ticket for the 7:00 PM bus back to Providence RI, if you are the 53rd person in line, you will NOT be going home on that bus. Depending on if it is the last bus of the day or not, you will have to wait 2-4 hours for the next bus (which you have to stand to the left side of the line and beg the driver to let you on). Depending on if he has a heart or not, he will either let you on first or tell you have to wait to see if there are extra seats left for you. What happens if it is the last bus for the day? Honestly, this has never happened to me so I don’t know. But knowing how inexcusably bad Peter Pan is with customer service , you’re screwed.

Get ready to spend the night in Port Authority. For this is why they say arrive at least 30 minutes prior to departure time; so you will get a seat on the bus.

Want to know a Model Secret? Arrive an HOUR before. That way you ensure you can get home.

PROBLEMS I have had on board Peter Pan; Other than the usual sitting next to crazy people, being trapped in the bathroom, and having to endure the lady airing her toes out next to my face, only one major thing has ever happened on a Peter Pan Bus….

The day after the Boston Marathon Bombing I had to go into New York City for a booking. So I boarded the Peter Pan Bus from Providence RI and went into the city. On the bus back home there was a squeamish man acting very oddly in line, almost like he was hiding something. No one did anything, but we all looked at each other like- Do you see this crazy man too? Well we boarded the bus and were almost out of the city (In Washington Heights I believe), when this said man stood up, walked up to the bus driver, and demanded to be let off the bus. The bus driver pulled over and we were all flabbergasted as to what was going on. The bus driver asked the man what his name was to verify his identity by going through all of the tickets (he didn’t have an ID), unsurprisingly, his name was no where to be found. Thats not suspicious………. Based on Peter Pan’s Protocol (I called), NO ONE is allowed on or off the bus until the destination has be reached after departing. BUT my bus driver debated for about 10 minutes on what he should do, and then let the guy OFF THE BUS. Not only does he let him off the bus with no knowledge of who he really is, but he allowed him go through the baggage WITHOUT WATCHING WHAT HE WAS DOING. And then the man ran off with no baggage in hand and was never to be seen again. UM WHAT. CAN WE SAY TERRORIST ACTIVITY?!?!?!?!? Everyone on the bus was freaking out, and I was almost 99.999% sure I was going to be blown up. Thankfully, I got home safely and nothing happened. But it was still the scariest 4 hours of my life.

I called Peter Pan to complain, and guess what…. they did nothing. Thanks Peter Pan.

MegaBus

A little cheaper than the Peter Pan bus line, MegaBus is a great second choice. It is a Double Decker bus with reserved seating (meaning if you buy a seat, you will have a seat) , a disgusting bathroom, and has outlets and WiFi. BUT, there is no waiting area and the bus does not come a frequently, so it is not as convenient to your schedule. . You get picked up on the street in your city (waiting outside in the cold/snow/rain/blazing heat) and then you are dropped off on 28th and 7th in NYC (right by Panera, YESSS.). The drop off spot in NYC isn’t so bad because you are by restaurants and a subway station; but the pick up spot is DREADFUL.

Picture this, it is 9:00 PM on December 1- the temperature outside has just dropped below freezing, you are walking in the dark, by yourself, in an area of NYC that is basically uninhabited. This is where they pick you up, across the street from The Javits Center at 34th and 12th. Also known as I’m afraid to be alone here for I will be attacked.

Bolt Bus We have all seen the signs- “BOLT FOR A BUCK!” . Well, Bolt Bus is the bus line that claims you can travel to and from Boston- New York City for a dollar. This is true, if purchased many months in advance (Doesn’t help us Models.) Other than that it is similar to both Peter Pan and Mega bus, for it has a smelly bathroom, outlets,WiFi, is a single tiered bus like Peter Pan, and picks you up and drops you off in random spots like Mega bus.

FUNG WAH. The most scandalous of all the bus lines, Fung Wah takes the rider from Boston to New York City for a flat fee of $15. Yes, you read that right. A round trip to NYC for only $30. Seems to good to be true? Well it is……..

The bus drivers are not certified, the buses are not up to US standards, and the entire company is basically illegal- which is why it is the cheapest and most used bus company. If you are fine with sacrificing your life to save some money, this bus is for you.

But, I’m sorry to say that if this is the bus you are interested in taking, it is no longer in service due to how hazardous it is. That does not mean it is gone forever though, keep checking their website for updates!

There is one exception to the bus rule. and it is the most marvelous bus of all. ………….. The Limo Liner.

Limo Liner is how the middle class diva’s travel who would rather not spend all their money on the train, but still want a glamorous trip. Traveling from the Hilton in Boston to the Hilton in New York City; Limo Liner is the most relaxing and expensive bus ride of your life. Prices range from $69-$89 one way; and include a meal, snacks, movie, music, and a very clean bathroom. Lets not forget the on board attendant who serves on your beck and call. Can we say top model status.

The ride is so smooth and relaxing, it is definitely worth the money.

The Palatial Train

Old school Hollywood glamour… relaxation…. adventure….. mystery; all of which are associated with riding the train. Though the present day train is not as luxurious as it was in the 1950′s, it is still thoroughly enjoyable. Amtrak is the main train service to and from New York City; whether it be to Boston, Providence, Connecticut, Philadelphia, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine…… Amtrak travels there.

Just like a plane there is a coach class and a business class. Business class is very similar to coach except it is more expensive and includes more leg room and special privileges. Coach Class has comfy seats, outlets, WiFi, overhead storage, and the ability to buy food and drink from the Cafe Cart located near Business Class. Taking the train is by far the most peaceful way to travel and it is always on time!!!! THIS is the main difference between the bus and the train, depending on traffic you can be stuck on the bus for an extra two hours, but the train is always on schedule. If you are strapped on time, the train is the way to go, but be prepared to pay a hefty penny. Between $80-$100 one way.

Upon arriving at Penn Station you will leave the train to be immersed with a rush of heat. At first you will feel like you are in sauna and then you will start profusely sweating. Personally, I love the rush of heat because I’m always cold, but for my mom and most of the entire human race ; the heat is not a welcome change. Next you will be pushed towards the staircase to exit the boarding tracks, and when I say push, I mean literally people will push you forward if you are not moving fast enough for them. Welcome to New York City and fasten your seat-belt.

Pennsylvania (Penn) Station is a high tech and less appealing version of Grand Central Station. Here you will find many shops, restaurants, and of course a public bathroom. But most importantly there is an Amtrak waiting room. Since Amtrak is insanely expensive, they have an exclusive waiting room only for Amtrak travelers. If you are taking NJ Transit or any other train, sorry but you have to stand or sit on the ground; the “elite” Amtrak waiting rooms with chairs and fans are not for you.

The worst part of Penn station is when you have to take the train ride home. Taking the train home is a multiphase process:

Step 1) Arrive at Penn Station at least 45 minutes before departure.

Step 2) Wait to see if your train is on the departure/arrival board

Step 3) If it is good, now you wait for the track to be posted.

Step 4 ) The track is posted, now BOLT AS FAST AS YOU CAN TO THE TRACK.

It will be like a school of fish migrating to their habitat; one moment no one is moving and then the next second- BAM, everyone charges for one track. Let me tell you that you will be pushed, shoved, and or trampled getting to the track.

One time a lady used her baby carriage to push me out of the way. and trust me, I did not make a scene because if a mom is willing to risk her child’s health, she would certainly do anything to affect mine.

Again, people in New York City are crazy.

Metro North Railroad

Metro North Railroad is a train service from Connecticut- New York City and New Jersey -New York City. Metro North has characteristics of both a bus and a train; as cheap as a bus but on time like a train- Metro North is the best of both worlds. Ranging from $15.50-$21.50 one way, Trains are in service all day. Though, the seats are hard and there is no food; but there is a sketchy bathroom. If you live in Connecticut or New Jersey, you have it made.

Arriving at Grand Central Station, you will be welcomed by beautiful architecture and many shops. Oh, lets not forget the 100000 people trying to get somewhere too. The first time you arrive at Grand Central Station will be very overwhelming and scary; so I suggest being in a team of two to three people. Three heads are better than one!

The I give up and just Drive myself

Hate waiting in line, dealing with people, and just spending a lot of money on transportation? Then driving to NYC is for you! All it takes is 3-4 hours of driving, gas money, and some good music. A lot of people get so frustrated with public transportation that they give up on it and swear to never ever use it again. But, Driving to NYC with your friends can be an amazing adventure. As you travel on the open road (more like crowded highway) as independent powerful women you are unstoppable. Singing to music, gossiping, eating chocolate- its the best.

But, there is a catch. PARKING IN NYC

Parking in NYC is like catching a shark with just your mouth- impossible. There will be no free spots for you to park in so you will have to pay an astronomical amount in a garage. $20 for 45 minutes? Sounds about right. They do have these wicked cool parking garages where they suspend your car in the air though. Dangerous, but cool.

So in the long run, this option is not economical….at all. For you end up spending hundreds of dollars on parking and tolls. New York has these weird tolls that bill you later, so keep track of your mail and make sure to pay the toll! If you do not you will be fined a huge amount, or worse summoned to court!

The Self Indulgent Limo

Treat yourself to a personal day and act like a princess. First, charter a limo to pick you up from your house and drive you to NYC. In the limo there will be champagne, water, and mini chocolates for you to enjoy. Next, request your favorite song to be played on repeat and enjoy the ride.

People who take Limos/ Hire Drivers to go to NYC are among the wealthiest on the planet for they are able to blow $600 on a car ride to NYC. That my friends is 6 round trip bus rides.

Riding in a Limo is one of the most self-indulgent and incredible experiences one can have. You feel like a celebrity, a big deal, extremely important- almost as if the world revolves around you, Because when people see a limo, they automatically want to know who is in it. Guess what? YOU are in it. You, my friend, are something. Do I think it is worth it? Absolutely not. But when you ride in a limo you are basically Beyonce. So bow down.

The I’m so Rich I will just Fly

Within two hours you will be in NYC from Boston. This is why its great to be Rich.

The End.

NYC, the city that never sleeps….. literally. Need a bus at midnight? They got it. What about a subway, sure just be prepared to wait for 20 minutes. How about a taxi? UMMMM, it can be hailed down, but sometimes they are all occupied/ the taxi driver is a jerk and won’t pick you up. But we will go into more detail later.

Stay tuned and enjoy your trip to New York City

How_to Travel novellas


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