Chinatown bus driver scolds me (and other Whites) for not eating at a Chinese restaurant
I went to Boston yesterday to see Pippin and had a very pleasant Bolt Bus experience getting there in the morning.
My friend and I unfortunately booked seats with Lucky Star back to the city and it was a whole different experience. After some very rude customer service at the Lucky Star "customer service" kiosk our bus left on time at 6pm.
Around 7:30 we stopped for dinner. Normally these buses stop at a McDonald's or Burger King- although no great shakes, everyone knows what to expect at a McDonald's. Instead our driver takes us into a deserted shopping plaza and proceeds to drive to the end of the plaza. There are no fast food restaurants in sight. A grocery store (The Big Y) is in the center of the plaza and a cheap looking Chinese restaurant at the end of the plaza.
The driver tells us we have 10 minutes and puts a sign out in front the Chinese restaurant that reads "Welcome NYC travelers. Eat here." My friend and I, along with several other White passengers walked past the Chinese restaurant to the grocery store. The bus driver got mad and yelled- you boys! hey you boys! you eat here!! We said no, and he said better be only 10 minutes.
I've never had a bus driver try to enforce a certain restaurant on his/her passengers. We thought it was funny and weird. The worst part was all the people who did buy the Chinese takeout then had to eat it on the bus, and it smelled so badly that I felt nauseous. I bus full of McDonald's smell would be bad enough, but this was 10x worse.
Does anyone else have any bad/strange experience with the Chinatown buses? I've heard Fengshaw (?) is even worse than Lucky Star, but I don't think I'll ever take them. I guess I learned my lesson and should stick to Bolt.
Life is tough, but New Yorkers can rise above all of these critical life and death moments with style and nobility.
"I went to Boston yesterday to see Pippin"
There's your first mistake.
You're riding a bus, to Boston, to see Pippin?
As you must know by now, you get what you pay for.
Wasn't the first mistake taking the bus?
What could you do in a Chinese restaurant in 10 minutes in the first place?
Has happened to me but not in the US and he gets paid to bring customers. Complain to the company
Actually Pippin was great. Paulus really did a brilliant job, and it's sure to clean up at the Tonys this year.
I realize what I'm getting into taking the bus, but I've only taken Megabus and Bolt before. Bolt is the better of the two, but both are tolerable compared to the Chinatown experience.
R5- As big a deal as the driver made about us making it back from the grocery store in 10 minutes (which we all did) he waited an extra 10 minutes for the others to get through the Chinese restaurant line and wait for their takeout.
The restaurant must have been owned by a cousin or family friend. Why else attempt to force everyone to eat there?
First of all nothing would smell worse than McDonalds unless it was a full diaper.
Second he clearly got a kickback.
Obviously, since you have made a huge point that the 'victims" were white, you must be attempting to get the focus of the responses to be Chinese bashing. Too transparent.
[quote]since you have made a huge point that the 'victims" were white
Not just white - "White".
[quote]The restaurant must have been owned by a cousin or family friend. Why else attempt to force everyone to eat there?
It doesn't have to be family or friend. It just has to be a restaurant owner who gives the driver a percentage of what is spent by the passengers. Is that too difficult to figure?
What, you couldn't wait until March for Pippin to open on BROADWAY?
Yeah, stick with Bolt. Or do what I do on Lucky Star: pack some energy bars and a drink, and use the break to just stretch out for a few minutes. It's only 4.5 hours, not an eternity.
I got my tickets to Pippin before the transfer was announced R12. With Paulus' track record I could have assumed it would have transferred, but I didn't want to take the chance.
If I hadn't gone down to DC to Follies I would never have seen Bernadette in the red dress...It's not wise to miss these out-of-towns if at all possible.
Do you save a lot of money on the ticket price by going to see it in Boston instead of waiting until it gets to Broadway?
Is it cheaper to go from NYC to Boston on the bus instead of on the train?
omg - Follies was the GREATEST!
The train is much more expensive. Trains have a ton of empty seats as a result.
R15- I wasn't seeing it in Boston so that I wouldn't have to see it in New York. Of course I'll go back to see what changes have been made, etc. Plus it was pretty amazing and there was a lot to take in.
My ticket for the show was $25 and between Bolt and Lucky Star the buses were $33. So it is cheaper than a Broadway ticket.
You no rike the bus? Whaaaa? We stop get good food for you and you no rike?
I would have gotten broccoli in garlic sauce...yum.
Wow, thanks R21. Those safety violations are scary. I'll never take a Chinatown bus again!
I can see why you went to the grocery store. As soon as the guy said 10 minutes I would never imagine having enough time to eat anything besides McDonalds or some other fast food joint.
Don't be so cheap -- take the train!
If you live in New York, why would you go to Boston to see a show?
Greyhound did the same thing. I knew a family who ran a truckstop restaurant in Kansas where every single Greyhound stopped for decades. They had a separate buffet line and dining room just for the bus passengers, and the prices were almost double what they charged in the regular restaurant. They got seriously rich running that place.
I think Greyhound got a piece of the action, but they had to promise to provide service 24/7, and I know the drivers all ate free (in the regular restaurant).
It's not that far from Boston to NY. Did you really need to eat at all?
This is a fairly common practice on tour buses, but it seems unusual for a regular bus, especially when there are places available with more options for eating.
Am I on the AARP website?
Call ICE and the NTSB
What's the big deal? You took a bus that's probably Chinese owned and that probably primarily caters to taking Chinese people to/from Boston and it stopped at a Chinese Restaurant. Why are you surprised?
If one of the Mega or Bolt Buses had a handful of Chinese people on it who bitched that it stopped at McDonald's, saying it wasn't food they eat and it stinks up the bus, you'd be the type of person screaming that they should just shut up and get over it.
OP is a penny-pinching, racist eldergay.
I'm in my late 20s (which may qualify as eldergay for some of you), I'm not racist and am smart with my money. Living in New York you learn how to budget.
The main issue was the driver harshly scolding us for not eating at the Chinese buffet, and going so far as to tell us that we had to eat there. No one is going to tell me where to eat and spend my money.
If they are getting a cut from the buffet then so be it, but they can't force their passengers to eat there.
Sure there are some Asians on the Chinatown buses, but there are just as many Whites, Blacks and Latinos.
To all of you nasty queens who are berating the OP for taking the bus to Boston, and for traveling there to see PIPPIN in the first place: Will you just please fuck off? As others have pointed out, the price of bus fare from New York to Boston and back is a small fraction of the price of the same trip by train. And why the fuck does someone have to justify going to see the show in Boston even if he DID know it was coming to Broadway when he booked the ticket -- which, apparently, he didn't? You assholes should really stop thinking you know better than everyone else, because it's clear that the OPPOSITE is true.
Firt of all, maybe OP went to Boston because he knew someone in the cast.
The Chinese fare to Boston is maybe $35 RT or something. AMTRAK on a Saturday is much more ($60+ each way or something? anyone?) and not a time saving.
I've been taking discount buses to DC every weekend for 13 years. I started out with Chinese buses, and until a few years ago they made rest stops at regularly turnpike rest areas, partly to gas up in cheaper NJ/Delaware and also to let passengers go to the bathroom (they don't put TP in their bathrooms, or didn't used to.) For a long time their DC-end stops were, hands-down, the worst Chinese restaurants I've ever been to. Two were in Chinatown, one was on L Street. Food was nasty, so was the staff.
OP, I believe I've been on the same bus with the same driver! I've taken that bus to Boston often.
I remember being bewildered by it too. Who really wants to stop for a buffet meal on a four hour bus trip? Isn't the point to stretch your legs and get a drink or snack to take back to the bus?
I walked into the restaurant to see what it was and to use the bathroom. The owners looked irritated when I left. The driver didn't say anything.
In the olden days, if a Chinese man got aggressive, you could beat him with a stick and nothing would happen to you.
I too, would've resisted paying full price for a buffet I only had 10 minutes to eat.
OP have Ed Zachary disease. His face look Ed Zachary like his ass.
R33, I think you meant to say you were born in the late 1920s.
R34, how dare anyone make fun on the OP for complaining about cut-rate service when taking a cut-rate bus trip?
R40, they weren't making fun of the OP for complaining about cut-rate service, they were making fun of him for taking a bus to Boston at all, instead of the train. They also were making fun of him for traveling to Boston to see PIPPIN.
At any rate, complaining about cut-rate service in terms of the actual bus ride is one thing, and making a valid complaint about being coerced to eat at a particular restaurant during the rest stop is something else entirely. But I guess you're too stupid to understand why.
OP, you will not get sympathy on this website. For DLers, white people are always wrong and non-white people are always right. This is a free country. You can eat whereever you like and tell those that want to force you to eat somewhere to shove it.
R42 is right. White power! That's what we're getting close to around these parts anyway, right racist eldergays?
OP, NEVER take Lucky Star - always take FUNG WAH from NY-Boston and back. Same price (maybe cheaper), same schedule, and they always stop at a McDonald's somewhere in Connecticut. Plus, the NY stop is much more convenient....
None of that Chinese kickback nonsense.