I remember a commercial when I was a young boy that had a memorable tag line that went, “Go Greyhound, and leave the driving to us”. Greyhound Canada was founded in 1929. The name and running dog image has been a fixture in our minds when it comes to long distance travel as an alternative to taking the train or flying for nearly 90 years. Now here we are in 2018 and Greyhound is ending its passenger and freight services in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta at the end of October. The company says that its routes in rural Western Canada are not sustainable due to declining ridership and increasing costs. Greyhound says it has raised its concerns over the years with both provincial and federal officials so that they are fully aware of the situation. This is a double-whammy for rural residents in this province who already have had to contend with the shutting down of the Saskatchewan Transportation Company. I don’t know what the solution is but there needs to be one. There are those who live in smaller communities who rely on a bus service but, at the same time, we can’t expect a private company like Greyhound to lose money year after year. Ironically, in our largest city, we are constantly looking for ways to encourage people to “Go by bus, and leave the driving to Saskatoon Transit” with even a BRT (Bus Rapid Transit system) in the planning stages. That doesn’t help rural folks unless they want to pack up and move to Saskatoon.
That’s Coffeetalk. I’m Vic Dubois.