Found: Affordable escape to New York. Vamoose!

Photo by Judith Beermann
Anthony Driver and Yvonne Brooks-Little with Adolfo Dominguez trench coat
Anthony Driver and Yvonne Brooks-Little with Adolfo Dominguez trench coat

Georgetown to New York in four-and-a-half hours. Direct.

Skip the train, downtown traffic, the shuttle delays. Point to point.

Welcome to the new hip way to get to the City from it's tiny cousin to the south. (That's right: Georgetown, the mini-Manhattan.)

Vamoose (Photo by: The Georgetown Dish) Vamoose
But get ready, it's a bus. In this case, one called Vamoose, taking off from Arlington, a short walk across Key Bridge.

On a recent Saturday, the driver has a New York attitude. "I go straight through. I don't make stops." She's warning the passengers on this sold-out expedition. "No reading lights in the first four rows." When you hear that tone, you listen. You obey. Hey, it's a commute, just get us there. Besides, it's 2:00 pm. Who needs reading lights?

It's surprisingly smooth.

You may get stuck in traffic. A baby may cry. But babies generally don't take the bus. Mothers wouldn't choose to do that. And the passengers, oddly, do not feel the need to yak on their cell phones.

Yes, you heard that right. Is this the one place in modern America where people don't want to be overheard? Blame it on the bus -- it's quiet. To have a conversation on your cell is to have 15, no 20, people hearing it.

So we go. It's one-quarter the price of the slow train on Amtrak -- $30 one way.

Can it be true? Could it be hip? Yes. It's cheap, it's hip, it's easy.

One recent Saturday, a Georgetown passenger takes the bus home from New York, and is so relaxed, she leaves a $400 coat in the overhead luggage rack. 10 minutes after getting off the bus, she realizes.

Phone calls, email messages to Vamoose. 24 long hours.

Then, a call. "Ms. Solomon, we have your coat. It's here for you to pick up."

A friend, in kindness, sets out to claim the beloved trench. Will it be wrinkled? Will it be ruined?

Yvonne Brooks-Little (Photo by: Judith Beermann) Yvonne Brooks-Little
Hanging prominently on the wall at Vamoose regional headquarters in Bethesda, it hangs quite elegantly. Yvonne Brooks-Little, regional manager, says matter-of-factly, “We’re known for service both on and off the bus. We don’t find everything," she says, "but we have returned everything from iPads to $500 Jimmy Choo shoes.”

In this case, the passenger’s note read: “The coat was left on the right side upper luggage storage above the fourth row of seats. Thank you.”

Two days later, after leaving her gunmetal grey Adolfo Dominguez trench coat on the seat, the passenger received the good news from Anthony Driver (yes, his real name, though ironically Anthony is a supervising manager, not an actual, ahem, driver). He had tracked down the missing coat. Then, he tracked down its owner from Georgetown.

Recently voted best bus to New York City by Bethesda Magazine, Vamoose has a solid fan base from students to cabinet officials who enjoy the service and convenience, not to mention the $30 ride. For an extra $20, Vamoose offers Gold service: a luxurious bus with only 36 seats and 50% more leg room.

Vamoose Gold Bus provides daily luxurious bus transportation between New York City and Arlington (as well as Bethesda and Lorton). For more information, including $20 off each way for Georgetown University and American University students, contact: www.vamoosebus.com

 

Isabel Johnson, Yvonne Brooks-Little and Anthony Driver (Photo by: Judith Beermann) Isabel Johnson, Yvonne Brooks-Little and Anthony Driver

 

 

0 Comments For This Article

YB-L

Great Article. Vamoose has service from Lorton, VA 2 NYC

anonymous

Congratulations. The well-heeled in Bethesda have been taking Vamoose to downtown Manhatten in growing numbers for at least several years now. Beautiful buses. And the best thing is being able to return from the same central location with such ease that it's a piece of cake. We've been doing it ever since we learned about it. You'll marvel.

Alix Sundquist

A retired ambassador recommended Vamoose to me several years ago and I've been taking it from Arlington to Penn Station and back ever since. Plus, I've recommended it to many of my friends who also swear by it. I have yet to try to Gold Bus, which was cancelled due to a broken window, but got a free ride instead and the ticket is still valid for my next visit! Easy, cheap, comfortable, what could be better? Bravo, Vamoose!

Frequent commuter

You know Vamoose has been around... for years, right? I've been riding it since 2006.