DALLAS, May 9, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Greyhound, the largest provider of intercity bus transportation in North America, today is commemorating its 100th anniversary. To celebrate, the company will host a series of events scheduled throughout the year – showcasing its growth from one vehicle operating out of Hibbing, Minn., to its current standing as one of the world's most iconic brands and an integral part of America's transportation infrastructure.
On May 29, the company will launch its Centennial Tour, which will be composed of two mobile museum tours simultaneously moving across the United States. Visiting nearly 40 cities over the next seven months, the Centennial Tour will feature two buses converted into mobile museums, featuring displays of memorabilia, such as signage, vintage driver uniforms and an entire wall of history where guests will be able to see Greyhound's transformation over the years, as well as view videos via interactive touchscreen displays. The tours will also feature restored classic coaches, such as the 1914 Hupmobile, 1931 Mack, 1937 Yellow Coach, 1947 Silversides, 1948 ACF Brill I-41, 1954 Scenicruiser, 1968 Scenicruiser and the 1984 Americruiser 2. To showcase the company's recent transformation, several of Greyhound's new, modern coaches featuring amenities such as free Wi-Fi, leather seats, power outlets and extra legroom will round out the tour. Information about the tour schedule can be found at www.greyhound.com/tour beginning May 15.
"Greyhound has joined an elite group of brands that have withstood the test of time to celebrate 100 years of business, but we're only here because of hardworking employees, doing what's right when no one's watching and dedication to delivering an exceptional customer experience," said Dave Leach, president and CEO, Greyhound. "We're proud of our rich heritage, and the changes we've made in the past five years to improve the travel experience are what we're highlighting this year. We're not done yet either, as we continue to look for innovative ways to enhance our technology, training, customer service, and ultimately, our guest experience."
From its humble beginnings in Hibbing to more than 3,800 destinations across North America, Greyhound has continued to lead the pack with innovations that have become standard in the intercity bus industry today. It was the first to introduce rear-mounted engines with its 1936 Super Coach, giving the driver better visibility of the road ahead, along with the first belly compartments for luggage. In the late 1930s, Greyhound brought on-board air conditioning as a new feature, along with other passenger comforts such as washrooms and an air-suspension ride. The company was the first to introduce express service between cities in as early as the 1950s, a service that was resurrected as Greyhound Express® in 2010 with an enhanced offering, including free Wi-Fi, power outlets, extra legroom and a guaranteed seat. And just last year, Greyhound was the first to introduce personalized on-board entertainment delivered to customers' personal devices with BLUE™.
In 2007, Greyhound became a division of FirstGroup, the leading transport company in the United Kingdom and North America. Starting in 2009, Greyhound began buying new buses, featuring a neoclassic livery and equipped with modern amenities, the latest in safety features and environmental technology. By the end of this summer, nearly all of Greyhound's fleet of more than 1,200 coaches will be new or like-new. Additionally, Greyhound is already working on a massive upgrade to its digital platforms, with a more modern reservations system, new online and mobile offerings and providing guests with real-time travel updates.
"I started at Greyhound as a bag handler more than 25 years ago, and it is incredible to see where the company is today," Leach added. "Bus travel is different now; the travel industry as a whole is different now. We're always looking for ways to make the company better. I've stayed at Greyhound throughout the years because, in my opinion, I work for the greatest company in the U.S. We, as a Greyhound family, are passionate about this brand and are dedicated to bringing it into the next 100 years."
On May 15, the company is launching a new microsite, www.greyhoundhistory.com, which not only will showcase Greyhound's history, but will continue to be updated with new ventures the company embarks upon. For images and b-roll, contact Lanesha Gipson or Alexis Louie.
Greyhound is the largest North American provider of intercity bus transportation, serving more than 3,800 destinations across the continent. The company also provides Greyhound Package Express (GPX) and charter services. For fare and schedule information and to buy tickets call 1-800-231-2222 or visit the website at www.greyhound.com. For the latest news and travel deals, follow GreyhoundBus on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GreyhoundBus, Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GreyhoundBus, or follow our new blog, The Hound, at http://www.bloggreyhound.com.
FirstGroup plc is the leading transport operator in the UK and North America with revenues of more than £6.9 billion a year. We employ approximately 120,000 employees and transport more than 2.5 billion passengers a year. Our vision is to provide solutions for an increasingly congested world…keeping people moving and communities prospering.