January 25, 2011

Calif.'s West Valley joins Trailways team

Trailways has launched its 75th anniversary year by welcoming West Valley Trailways of California as its newest affiliated bus operation. The 47 year-old family owned and operated company, located south of San Francisco, specializes in school and military transports, convention services, and tourism charters.

West Valley Trailways of California becomes the team’s 89th affiliated bus company.

“We are delighted to have West Valley come onboard with us in this very important year,” said Trailways President/CEO, Gale Ellsworth. “They bring a lot of expertise and knowledge to our network about the motorcoach industry, not only in California, but for the rest of the west as well.”

John Habr founded West Valley in 1964, as a commuter shuttle for airline employees who worked at the San Francisco International Airport. Later, the company added charter and ski trips to Reno and the mountains; by 1974, the company had become a full-service charter operation. 

Scott Habr is now GM of the company, which his grandfather founded with one motorcoach; he now oversees a fleet of 23 coaches and employs 48 staff members. The company holds the rigorous U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) safety ratings required of all Trailways affiliated bus companies.

Dean Golden, West Valley’s operations manager, said the company’s affiliation with Trailways is part of the company strategic business plan, which mandates future growth.

“We have wanted to rebrand ourselves; when we looked at our options to accomplish this, we kept going back to Trailways,” he said.

“We worked with the Trailways team at the 2010 Winter Olympics and learned more about their culture and team spirit. We are particularly interested in their desire to get more national and international projects for its network of bus companies, which fits right in with our own plan. Also, we polled our customers about their perception of the Trailways brand; it was all positive. Trailways is highly respected. We look forward to moving forward with the team.”

Trailways is celebrating its 75th anniversary year (Founded February 5, 1936) in 2011 as North America’s oldest independent group of privately owned motorcoach companies, operating over 2,000 motorcoaches serving 1,000-plus destinations throughout North American and parts of Europe. Trailways carries more than 18 million passengers annually.

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