Greyhound.ca is a piece of shit website that is probably convincing people to buy cars.

Posted by jeremyclarke on February 9, 2009 · General

UPDATE: Some commenters are reporting that the Greyhound.ca site works with Chrome despite still not working with Firefox, so maybe Chrome is the solution you are looking for. Read below for my take on how the site didn’t work in 2009, obnoxiously still relevant today.

From: Jeremy Clarke <jer @si….ing.com>
To: <webmaster @greyhound.ca>
Date: Fri, 6 Feb 2009 19:49:45 -0500
Subject: Greyhound.ca is completely broken if you haven’t noticed

Hi, I am a person who likes to use the bus as well as the internet.

Your site has been broken for years now and makes it harder to take busses. Lately it has become completely broken. You can’t search for any bus schedule without incurring an error.

Please try using your site and notice how broken it is, then fire whoever is in charge, hire someone who knows how to program a website, then make sure they fix the website. If you cannot handle this task please fire yourself, you do not deserve to be answering the ‘webmaster’ address at this domain.

error message from greyhound.caAnyone who rides the intercity busses in Canada has probably noticed that there is no way to get the Greyhound site to give you a proper quote on a bus fare, its been like that for years: they actually told me once at the terminal that I shouldn’t trust times and prices on the site because it is innacurate.

What’s new is that it now shows an error any time you even try to find the times that the busses leave. This means that the Greyhound.ca website is now 100% LESS USEFUL than the flyers they print out and offer a bus stations with departure times.

It’s pathetic and frustrating. They end up making you call them and waste human phone time instead of fixing their site. While getting angry I noticed a link on the site saying “have a problem? Email webmaster@greybound.ca”, so I sent them the message above.

Their response?

From: <postmaster @firstgroup.com>
Date: Fri, Feb 6, 2009 at 7:49 PM
Subject: Undeliverable: Greyhound.ca is completely broken if you haven’t noticed
To: jer@si….ing.com

Delivery has failed to these recipients or distribution lists:

webmaster@greyhound.ca
The recipient’s e-mail address was not found in the recipient’s e-mail system. Microsoft Exchange will not try to redeliver this message for you. Please check the e-mail address and try resending this message, or provide the following diagnostic text to your system administrator.
________________________________
Sent by Microsoft Exchange Server 2007

Thanks for the confirmation, assholes.

Posted by jeremyclarke on · General

40 Comments

  1. thelouisguy

    Jer, which browser are you using? I am not home right now so I cannot test Safari/Mac but I am at work using Chrome/Windows and it works just fine. I am sure you know what you are talking about, and it would not surprise me that the site is broken, since I have come across a lot of broken sites over the years, but I have yet to find an error. I was using the Kirkland station going to toronto, ottawa, sudburry, etc.

    February 9th, 2009 at 2:46 pm

  2. Kevin

    Ouch. Fail on so many levels.

    Props for calling them out on their bullshit. Too bad the whole ‘e’ level of their business is underwater :P

    February 9th, 2009 at 3:33 pm

  3. exalen

    I have to say that was a rather poetic ending. Maybe print it out and mail it to them. A lot of companies have legal obligations to respond to written letters (in Australia anyway, not sure about Canada).

    February 9th, 2009 at 6:46 pm

  4. Jeremy Clarke

    Louis: Yeah. I tried it again and it worked for ottawa->montreal but not for montreal->magog. Mira says it never works for her and that’s what I based my statement on, but I guess it just often doesn’t work, but manages to have the most popular routes semi-functional.

    That said, if you try to have it actually help you understand pricing and discounts I think you’ll find it decidedly broken in various subtle ways that make it untrustworthy and horrible to use.

    February 9th, 2009 at 6:53 pm

  5. thelouisguy

    Jer: Yes, I see what you mean. I have only ever used the website once, a few years ago but understand now if I had to use it on a more frequent basis that it is pretty broken.
    Actually, right after posting my comment, I checked a few other searches and found most of them had a “problem with my request”.
    Also, I think it is hilarious that the webmaster’s email address is unmonitored and unused.

    February 10th, 2009 at 9:28 am

  6. Busgirlmissescar

    so here I am months later – and totally frustrated by the website as described above. I google “why is the greyhound website a piece of shit?” and got a surprising number of hits, not to mention the above commentary – too funny, I am less mad right now because I am laughing.

    August 13th, 2009 at 12:14 am

  7. K????

    Greyhound can charge WHATEVER it wants for “service” but does it have to deliver???? Hell no!! How in the hell can you get ANY info from this Co.??, an gawd forbid if you want to track an express parcel [ for which I paid $48. bucks!!]

    October 30th, 2010 at 7:30 pm

  8. Sodapopinski

    The website is excrement, they need to find a solution for this elementary annoyance.
    I shouldn’t be surprised that the site doesn’t work, I mean what every worked when it came to greyhound?…. the bathroom door can still be opened from the outside even though it says “occupied”.
    The hand sanitizer is always empty, toilet paper? hahaha… short answer is “bring some”, I swear they still use VHS when playing movies too.

    December 20th, 2010 at 9:17 pm

  9. Peter

    Well I’ve been battling the greyhound site this weekend, and the only way I’ve found to beat it is to use the web browser chrome on a p.c. but this may be a route dependent workaround.

    August 21st, 2011 at 10:17 pm

  10. jo

    i too have enccounterd the same problems twice. the first time the price tripled because i had to go to thje window to buy it after it had charged my credit card 27 times. I also had to get my card company to report them for what they were doing.Then a few months ago i went to whistler just outside of vancouver for a few days to get out of town and the website didnt work so i called the customer service and they went a head and booked it at a cost that was doubled with an extra 10$ fee added on cause i had to use the phone.

    October 1st, 2011 at 12:34 pm

  11. mo

    Too idiotic to live … I was broken “for several years” in early 2009 and it’s still completely broken in late 2011. So several years are starting to approach the decade range. What an epic fail! Ha!

    October 5th, 2011 at 9:20 pm

  12. mo

    For the posterity record, here is what it returns when trying to simply get the schedule from Kitchener to Toronto; go ahead, try it yourself:

    http://www.greyhound.ca/en/quicklink/Default.aspx?from=KITCHENER/ON&to=TORONTO/ON

    Server Error in ‘/’ Application.

    Error

    Description: An unhandled exception occurred during the execution of the current web request. Please review the stack trace for more information about the error and where it originated in the code.

    Exception Details: System.Exception: Error

    Source Error:

    Line 24:
    Line 25: if (node != null)
    Line 26: throw new Exception(String.Format(“Error {0}”, node.Value));
    Line 27: }
    Line 28:

    Source File: e:\Inetpub\wwwprod.greyhound.ca\wwwroot\App_Code\QuickLink\QuickLinkData.cs Line: 26

    Stack Trace:

    [Exception: Error ]
    App_Code.QuickLink.QuickLinkData.CheckXmlError(XmlDocument document) in e:\Inetpub\wwwprod.greyhound.ca\wwwroot\App_Code\QuickLink\QuickLinkData.cs:26
    App_Code.QuickLink.UI.Schedules.PopulateData(Boolean friday) in e:\Inetpub\wwwprod.greyhound.ca\wwwroot\App_Code\QuickLink\UI\Schedules.cs:138

    [Exception: Error , Url: http://WWW33.greyhound.com:40028/ticketcenter/en/XMLSchedules.asp?ocity=KITCHENER&ostate=ON&dcity=TORONTO&dstate=ON&ddate=10%2f05%2f2011
    App_Code.QuickLink.UI.Schedules.PopulateData(Boolean friday) in e:\Inetpub\wwwprod.greyhound.ca\wwwroot\App_Code\QuickLink\UI\Schedules.cs:176
    App_Code.QuickLink.UI.Schedules.SearchSchedules_Click(Object sender, EventArgs e) in e:\Inetpub\wwwprod.greyhound.ca\wwwroot\App_Code\QuickLink\UI\Schedules.cs:240
    App_Code.QuickLink.UI.Schedules.OnLoad(EventArgs e) in e:\Inetpub\wwwprod.greyhound.ca\wwwroot\App_Code\QuickLink\UI\Schedules.cs:218
    System.Web.UI.Adapters.ControlAdapter.OnLoad(EventArgs e) +15
    System.Web.UI.Control.LoadRecursive() +8683053
    System.Web.UI.Page.ProcessRequestMain(Boolean includeStagesBeforeAsyncPoint, Boolean includeStagesAfterAsyncPoint) +627

    October 5th, 2011 at 9:24 pm

  13. Whatthe

    Yup. Still very, very broken.

    October 12th, 2011 at 6:44 pm

  14. Marlene

    I agree– horrible website. I spent 2 hrs trying to book a short jaunt. Turned out that the website wouldn’t let me complete the process because the boarding point was closed the day I wanted to board but I had to phone two greyhound employees to finally determine that. The first person was barely understandable because of her broken accented English and the second one eventually told me if I had booked for a different day it would have worked. He was at the number that the first girl gave me for help with Online booking. Some help– even rude. They advertise ” no reservations necessary , just come to board” but he told me that it would be at the drivers discretion to allow me on to purchase my ticket at the next service stop ( which I never could determine which points were service stops on their website). The print at home tickets I never did get to see as I could not get to the point where I actually could purchase. My beef is that no where as you proceed are there any explanations why the screens do not work and of course you keep trying different things. For some reason even though all my info was typed in correctly it kept telling me I was missing info.I double checked and still do not know why that kept happening Probably something about them retaining cookies. I hope you are passing all these emails on to them. I have booked flights many times with different airlines with no trouble at all . They should take a lesson from the airline sites. Thanks for the space.

    December 4th, 2011 at 1:00 am

  15. veronica

    Hi guys,

    try Google Chrome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I have tried a thousand times to look up schedule times with firefox and it finally worked only with chrome…still the website is bullshit but anyway I need to buy my tickets so I am glad that someone in this blog gave the advice to use chrome, thanks!

    December 26th, 2011 at 12:16 pm

  16. n

    i agree with firefox it doesn’t work, but with chrome it finally did. thanks for the advice!

    January 7th, 2012 at 5:46 am

  17. jeremyclarke

    Good detective work, commenters! I added an update message at the top of the post recommending that people try Chrome instead of Firefox if that’s part of their problem. I switched to using Chrome for pretty much everything about a year ago and it’s definitely a good thing to have around either way :)

    January 9th, 2012 at 10:04 am

  18. Peter Scribble

    It’s not the website that is the problem with Greyhound – it’s the entire frickin company. They have reneged on their tickets, booted me off because the driver read my ticket wrong, made my 10 year old daughter cry (not once but twice!) and have the assholiest staff I have ever met. They are the worst service-oriented company I have ever had the misfortune to patronize. They didn’t even have the courtesy to reply to me after I wrote an official letter of complaint (regarding my daughter’s situation). What a disgusting excuse for a company. I tell EVERYONE how horrible they are…

    January 25th, 2012 at 10:09 pm

  19. Laurie

    Tried using Chrome for greyhound several times over the past year. Still no luck. Today a big SQL error message came up telling me someone is trying to hack into their website and pretend they are greyhound.ca.

    Before that, the main page told me to fill in all required fields, when all required fields were filled in. This happened 6 times.

    I suspect greyhound is just going to shut down their entire business before too long. It’s not just their website that seems to be collapsing into oblivion.

    February 2nd, 2012 at 10:52 am

  20. Vetty

    Tell me about it. I’ve just come from their site, trying to get the most basic information on fares. I can’t even get past the first step, because every time I hit the button to search schedules, I get: “search_error: 17 février 2012 is not a valid value for DateTime.” Oh, right, I can’t use this because my operating system is in French. That alone is questionable, but that’s downright irritating when you consider that the website is ALSO OFFERED IN FRENCH, and that the error happens there as well.

    I’ve tried this with IE and Firefox, with the same problem in both. I’ve read somewhere that Chrome isn’t affected, but do I really want to install a browser I don’t like just for the sake of navigating one site?

    As for the translation, it’s awful. “Any time” appears in Spanish, “En savoir davantage” (“learn more”) is translated as “en savoir advantage”, and so on.

    February 17th, 2012 at 11:37 am

  21. Andy

    I can get fares with Chrome, but you can’t purchase a ticket once you get them! There’s no way to select a fare and get to Step 5 Purchase.

    March 16th, 2012 at 4:36 pm

  22. Lisa

    My son and I just lost $115 because my son got confused while purchasing the ticket and clicked the “print at home” option. He thought he was just printing out the confirmation number. I emailed Greyhound and they said they were sorry for the inconvenience but that our printed out (at home) ticket could not be exchanged. We were not able to catch the bus the date of the ticket for we ran into money problems (not having enough money). We were wanting to relocate. Anyhow we had hoped we could at least pay the $16 per ticket and have the date changed. We are very low-come and because of Greyhound’s stupid policy and that “print at home” stupid option we lost $115. I just feel so cheated out of that money. My son does to. He felt really badly and stupid about it. I told him it wasn’t his fault; it was ok to just forget about it. I just can’t figure out why Greyhound would have the print your ticket at home thing anyhow. Or maybe it is easy to figure. I just don’t think much of Greyhound.

    June 24th, 2012 at 6:05 am

  23. diana

    I’m using Chrome and I can’t even past the FIRST step!

    July 15th, 2012 at 7:16 pm

  24. Laurie

    You’re so right, the website is a piece of shit! And the service is horrible also. I’ve taken buses all over Mexico and their bus lines are beautifully clean and efficient. It must be because they’re not monopolized by one single lousy company. They have to compete against each other for customers so all of them are excellent. In Canada we only have Grey Hound and it’s hilariously and embarrassingly horrendous.

    July 26th, 2012 at 10:13 pm

  25. adsf

    cannot bloody believe it
    still screwed
    i had this problem last year and called them and they wouldn’t give me the web fare and i told them they’re website didn’t work
    seriously in need of alternate bus company in western canada
    gonna look that up
    so frustrating

    November 9th, 2012 at 6:44 am

  26. Michele

    I have been heading up to the U.P. for years in the winter when I dont want to fight the snow. I have always had a problem with getting to the “choose a return trip” as there is no button to click. The next best part is getting on the busses that have “wi-fi” ummmmmm, yeah. Ive never been on one that worked. Shitty, dirty bus line but no other choice, sucks.

    November 18th, 2012 at 7:21 pm

  27. Victor

    Just tried with Firefox, Internet Explorer and Chrome. All latest versions. It won’t work. This time it’s because it won’t let me write more than 10 caracters or so in the address field. I think I’ll just use teleportation…

    December 12th, 2012 at 11:52 pm

  28. Juliana

    I thought something was wrong with the internet on my phone , i hadn’t realized that the problem could be that something was wrong with the greyhound website. Until my dad mentioned it to me as a possibility, I found this to be true. Due to the the. Fact that my is new and i haven’t had any problems searching other transportation sites, like
    Amtrak , Megabus etc. Those sites were in working order and provided the information that you i was looking for, i have tried to get on the website on my dads phone. And the internet at the library but i still couldn’t get on the greyhound website .

    December 13th, 2012 at 8:58 am

  29. oj

    Need information on xmas eve and no hope need tickets for xmas day and i can’t even upload s d this is a big problem for greyhound and they need help asap

    December 25th, 2012 at 12:38 am

  30. King

    Yea this website is the ultimate shit. I tried safari, chrome, internet explorer on both mac and windows. I cannot pay and get a ticket. After step 5 it doesn’t work. Calling them and booking adds $12 to the ticket. I went to their station and they cannot find the destination when it was clearly shown online and told by their customer service that it exists. What a waste of time. Greyhound.ca is the worst site ever. Anyone know any other bus services in Canada?

    January 4th, 2013 at 5:16 pm

  31. golbarg

    This website is the worst. Languages get confused, can’t get to payment page (unless I add the submit button using a debugger myself on step 4). Payment doesn’t work on Firefox (does on Chrome). Also, pressing radio buttons works completely randomly. Payment confirmation page is awkward.

    Complained and got a $25 voucher, I believe that’s not enough as I spent hours getting the tickets.

    “Greyhound Lines of Canada is committed to providing quality customer service. The website is continually being evaluated and the issue you described is being reviewed.”

    Please.

    February 28th, 2013 at 5:14 pm

  32. Jeff Roe

    I have used the Greyhound site 3-4 times a year to book tickets and never an Issue, even for the last 2-3 years.Not sure what people are doing wrong. I also work for a Greyhound agent and I can assure u the website is working fine, If it tells u no destination found it could be that it’s a flag stop or a small place, or its possible the schedule may not run on that day too,But if theirs ever issues Call your local Greyhound Agent, esepcailly in terms of schedule information!They can provide u with the best info!

    March 25th, 2013 at 5:17 pm

  33. Brett Stewart

    I just tried on both Chrome and Internet Explorer. I could not reach step 5 like many others had reported. The weird thing is I have seen this site work before on the same browsers. What a poorly supported site to have the same know issue at large for 4 years.

    May 1st, 2013 at 9:46 am

  34. Heather

    The website is just the tip of the iceberg! The website is terrible true, but if it stops you from taking the bus with them – it’s doing you a favour!

    I had a ticket this morning (which I had to go to a station to get because the website couldn’t find my city) and the bus came and went from the stop 20 minutes early. I passed it on my way to the stop! Was totally stranded and had to find a drive to my destination.

    They did respond to my Twitter query, but offered me a travel voucher for future travel – first for less than my ticket was worth. Then they offered me the full ticket price as a voucher. But a refund? Not possible I was told – it was a non-refundable ticket. But if it’s your fault I didn’t use the ticket, shouldn’t you just give me my money back?

    Customer service fail.

    May 3rd, 2013 at 11:02 am

  35. Tim

    Well, it’s May 14, 2013, and it looks like the website hasn’t worked in several years, yes, that’s YEARS! Heads need to roll! (ok, bad joke)

    Monty Python has the cheese shop sketch, Greyhound has their website.

    May 14th, 2013 at 10:42 pm

  36. Amber

    Can confirm: website still broken. It gets me all the way to confirming my purchase and then tells me I can’t. Tried on Firefox and Chrome.

    I am heading to the physical station now to purchase them. Cross your fingers!

    October 10th, 2013 at 12:06 pm

  37. Steve

    Friggin’ ridiculous. It lets me select fares, get all the way to the final confirmation step, then gives me the following bullshit error every single time:

    2216: Only 0 fares avail; try another fare or use Longhand fare selection

    If the fares aren’t fucking available, why did you fucking show them to me in the first place?! I think they keep it this way on purpose to sucker you into paying the more expensive non-web fare. They can’t possibly be THAT genuinely incompetent.

    November 18th, 2013 at 11:03 pm

  38. Tom

    The last time I used the Greyhound site I could actually lookup a route and find the schedule of the Boston/Albany route. Now, ha, it so does not work and they force you to know what bus service it is: Greyhound Express, Neon, etc. What if you don’t know? So you have to hunt. This is a wild goose chase. You never find what you are looking for. Then, to make matters worse, after you get entirely frustrated, you call up the 800 phone number to ask a human being and you get routed through a byzantine series of recorded questions most of which have nothing to do with what you are looking for. Suffice to say, I don’t care now when my friend is arriving on a bus from Boston. He can roam the streets Albany and be known as the man who never returned. (sound familiar?)

    January 31st, 2014 at 12:29 am

  39. name

    Didn’t use Chrome, won’t use Chrome. Used Opera on an Asus tablet. Problem I’m having is that I’m trying to get schedule information and it keeps trying to get me to buy a ticket.

    I haven’t set up a website for some years but I’m sure I could do better than this.

    August 3rd, 2014 at 2:46 pm

  40. John

    As of September 2014, the site generates an unrecoverable error every time when attempting to purchase a one way ticket. Two way ticket purchases seem to work. Hmmm.

    -jg-

    Toronto

    September 29th, 2014 at 10:53 am

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