May 18, 2005

TXT-ing Rideline

On a late afternoon I was on K Road wanting to take a bus to downtown. You must be already familiar with one of the most public transport user-unfriendly bus stop configurations around: you basically have to gamble which will be the first bus to arrive and accordingly stand at the appropriate bus stop, either on K Road Bridge or at the turn-off into Pitt Street. As with quantum physics, once you have made your decision, it is final, no changes can be made: just make another punt and choose your bus stop.
Now I noticed a small note on the bus stop inviting you to txt your bus stop # to Rideline, so I decided to find out what I would get back from them. The return txt didn't take long and consisted of a list of bus route numbers, destinations and times of arrival. I was pleasantly surprised that the first bus on the list actually did arrive bang on time. (It was of course a Ritchie's bus, which I had to forgo because my Fullers/Stagecoach season ticket is not valid, integrated ticketing one of those concepts that have eluded Homo Bus Aucklandicus). The second bus on the list was scheduled one minute after, and hey, there it was. I was suitably impressed and surprised. Congratulations on that score! Now just add S or R (or B or whatever) to the TXT listings to indicate bus company and you're sweet.

No comments: