Letter: To Peter Pan Bus Lines

As a highly respected bus line, I trust you’re grateful for feedback. In that spirit I want to tell you of a radically jarring, scary, quintessentially wrenching hardship I just experienced with your company, and a couple of my ideas on ways this might be dealt with to absolutely prevent any repeats.

I’m sharing as calmly as I can ... and please understand that to me (and I hope you, too) this was a major disaster that shook me to the core. I’m very disturbed ... and doing my utmost to rein in any anger, blame, hysteria.

Due to a major disability, I travel in a wheelchair.

On May 19, I arrived at Logan Airport in Boston on a red-eye special standby ticket from Oregon. I was returning from a totally unexpected, tragic death in my family (my son’s wife and mother of their six-week-old infant.)

My flight landed at 7:25 a.m. and by 8:30 a.m. I was assisted with my baggage aboard a Peter Pan bus to Boston South Station, where I was to connect to another Peter Pan bus to Springfield. Once at South Station, the Peter Pan driver assisted me off the bus. I was left in my manual wheelchair with my luggage. The driver assured me he had notified Peter Pan and that a representative would arrive soon and help me transfer to the bus to Springfield.

No Peter Pan representative ever showed up! After about half an hour, I realized I was stranded in a subterranean level beneath the station. I tried asking an MBTA employee for help. She was very busy managing commuters.

I called the ticket envelope-displayed number. That referred me to another number that referred me to yet another (in Dallas!) that never answered. (Juggling all of this one-handed, left-handed, holding the phone with shoulder and chin was incredibly tough!) With the Dallas number still ringing, ringing ... finally the MBTA rep got a break and, with a second MBTA rep assisted me and my luggage to the station level to buy my ticket to Springfield and be reinstated as one being assisted by Peter Pan.

Whew! Were it not for the kindness of the two MBTA folks, I might still be lost forever ’ neath the streets of Boston.

My suggestions: I trust you’ll pull out all the stops to prevent such total abandonment from every happening again, including: a prominently displayed number that is ALWAYS answered for anyone with a disability; printed on the ticket folder and/or ticket and/or on a wristband the passenger can wear.

Much of our legacy is what we leave in our wake. I hope you’ll team up with me to assure this happens never more. I trust you’ll promptly extend a major apology, a heartfelt thank you for my candor, an update on future preventatives, plus whatever else you might have up your sleeve.

To date, no response.


Shelburne Falls

To EDITOR: The previous comment not yet approved by Peter Pan...please verify if copy is printable through Michael Cruise, MCruise@PeterPanBus.com Thank you. Peter Pan Driver

First, in response to this letter writer, let me say that we offer our condolences in this difficult time. We certainly like to hear from our passengers on any improvements we can make in our transportation services. We, like the writer, have families that travel, and do not know the terrain, and need tender loving care when transferring from airport to bus and so on. I, as a bus driver, try to help the public whenever I can, and I assure you the vast majority of the Peter Pan team does likewise. Having said that, I must point out to the letter writer and reader that the only bus that leaves Logan International Airport and ends up in a "subterranean level beneath South Station" is the MBTA Silver Line, Not a Peter Pan motorcoach (bus). The Silver Line is an articulated transit bus that travels on streets but goes beneath the South Station train station in a tunnel station. It is also a free fare when travelling from Logan to South Station according to what I have heard. In addition, it has a rather convenient ADA wheelchair lift as compared to the ADA wheelchair lifts that we use on a Peter Pan Bus. On the other hand, Peter Pan Bus Lines offers motorcoach service between Logan Airport and South Station, where the traveler can change to another Peter Pan bus to Springfield. The schedule times are available at www.peterpanbus.com or by calling (800) 343-9999 during regular business hours. Please note, all Peter Pan busses have a wheelchair lift, although many of our customers with wheelchairs choose to call ahead 48 hours (this is optional) to assure a more seamless transportation experience. (It helps our operations personnel.) The Peter Pan bus picks up at the outer lane in front of all Logan terminals, however, the schedule is not as frequent as the Silver Line. If the letter writer had chosen the Peter Pan bus from Logan to South Station Bus Terminal, the bus driver would likely have called ahead to personnel at the terminal for assistance if a transfer was needed to the Springfield bus. All readers of this letter should be aware that South Station bus terminal is in the vicinity, but not directly on top of the South Station Train station/Subway/Silver Line station. It is approximately a block away, and on the 3rd floor. There are elevators and walkways connecting the two facilities, but, certainly if you are travelling with luggage, children, and so on, you should allow at least 20 minutes to make your way from one building to the other. The final point about the wrong (800) information number ( this is a phone number for a different bus company, Greyhound, which is headquartered in Dallas,Tx ) on the ticket "jacket" is warranted, and should be looked into. The letter writer does not say where the ticket/ticket jacket was purchased. In closing, I say the letter writer should again contact Peter Pan customer service again as no letter we receive should be left unanswered. Thank you for your input.

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