Five years after the launch of FlixBus, Europe's fastest-growing mobility provider, the company behind the green buses is bringing its one-of-a-kind business model to the U.S., with American travelers now able to purchase FlixBus tickets on major routes in the Southwest, including Los Angeles to Las Vegas, Los Angeles to Phoenix, Phoenix to Vegas, San Diego to Vegas, and more. Green buses will hit the roads with frequencies up to nine times per day beginning on May 31.
FlixBus is the brainchild of three young entrepreneurs, Jochen Engert, Daniel Krauss, and André Schwämmlein, who wanted to develop a completely new means of travel that was a blend of tech-startup, e-commerce, and traditional transportation. Based on this concept, FlixBus was launched in Germany in 2013 with a unique business model in which FlixBus manages the technology, ticketing, customer service, network planning, marketing, and sales, while its local SME partners are responsible for the daily operation of buses.
“Our business model has revolutionized the way people view — and utilize — buses in Europe, and we are excited to offer this fresh take on bus travel to people in the United States,” said André Schwämmlein, founder and CEO of FlixMobility. “We harness technology to create a better experience for travelers, with the goal of providing smart and green mobility for everyone to experience the world...and we do all of it without owning a single bus.”
For Phase 1 of the U.S. launch, 180 initial FlixBus connections will be operated by six regional bus partners: Arrow Stage Lines, American Explorer Motorcoach, Gray Line Arizona, Pacific Coachways, Transportation Charter Services (TCS), and USA Coach Services. FlixBus currently has 300 bus partners throughout Europe, many of which are small, family-run businesses. In the 28 markets in which it operates, FlixBus has created more than 7,000 jobs in the industry.
“The FlixBus model allow us to focus on the daily operation of our buses — something we have over 30 years of experience doing — and puts the technology and marketing in the hands of the experts at FlixBus,” said Terry Fischer, president of TCS. “FlixBus provides companies such as TCS a new business opportunity, and we’re looking forward to growing together through this partnership. It’s a smart way to operate which ultimately benefits the customer.”
With its U.S. launch, FlixBus hopes to encourage more people to park their cars and chose a more sustainable form of transportation. On top of buses being the most environmentally-friendly form of public transportation available, FlixBus passengers can choose to offset their carbon emissions with “CO2 Neutral” tickets.
“The minute we had Phase 1 planned, we were already working on Phase 2, which will include an additional 400 connections,” said Pierre Gourdain, managing director of FlixBus USA. “We hope to have green buses spread across the Western United States and aim for over 1,000 connections by the end of 2018. This is just the beginning.”
Prices for routes such as Los Angeles UCLA to Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas will run as low as $.99 cents. Every ticket guarantees a seat with extra legroom, onboard entertainment, and access to Wi-Fi and power outlets. FlixBus USA tickets can be purchased on the new U.S. ticket platform, via the FlixBus App or even onsite with bus drivers, depending on availability. Passengers can use the FlixBus App to track their bus, navigate to their destination and show their paperless ticket.