Those in the know, know CDTA's Sunday schedule is skeletal.
The last time I was in town for a holiday to use CDTA when buses operated on a Sunday/Holiday schedule was Memorial Day. I tried to schedule an errand using Trip Planner, and if I had followed the tool's recommendations, I would have waited and waited all day long. Trip Planner directed me to one of the many routes that don't run on Sundays.
I decided to try to live up to my transit riding super-hero title (thanks again, All Over Albany, the source for all-things-interesting about this region, including the daily Morning Blend for those who don't want to scour the day's news all by yourself; they're also the good people who I umm... lifted the above photo from) and run a test before the holiday to provide those folks in town who ride the bus and depend on one of the two online planning tools some sound advice.
DON'T USE EITHER GOOGLE TRANSIT OR TRIP PLANNER TO MAP OUT YOUR BUS RIDES AROUND AND ABOUT THE CAPITAL REGION ON LABOR DAY 2008.
Instead, to plan your bus trip, do one of the following:
- Call CDTA's information line: 482-8822 between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. today or Monday.
- Use a combination of the CDTA system map and schedules to plan your outing. Remember to check whether the routes you need actually operate on Sundays by checking each route schedule. Schedules are accessible directly on the system map by clicking anyplace you see a circled route number on the map.
Curious about the results of my test of Google Tranist and Trip Planner?
Testing was run Saturday night and Sunday morning for trips scheduled on Monday, September 1.
Trip Planner results
Unlike Memorial Day, CDTA's Trip Planner didn't leave me waiting on the corner for a bus that wouldn't show up. Instead they disabled all route information for September 1, even for the routes that will be operating. So, unless CDTA's IT staff is going to make last minute changes, using Trip Planner on Monday is not a wise choice.
Google Transit results
It doesn't look as though Google Transit got the memo from CDTA about Labor Day bus service. Every trip I entered for Monday gave me info for regular Monday service, with every route in the system operating. Now, I still might use Google Transit on Monday is to see if their walking alternative is more viable than the abysmal Sunday bus service!