The bus industry hasn't changed much, but one startup is well on their way to making consumers look at charter buses and bus lines in a new light. Shofur, founded in Atlanta, brings modern tech into the world of bus transportation.
It all started in 2012 when founder Armir Harris realized the need for better transportation during the Democratic National Convention in North Carolina. By acting quick, and using his uncle's charter bus connections, Harris was able to alleviate the problem of transportation during an extremely hectic and busy time, and from there the idea behind Shofur bloomed.
With only $800 Harris turned his idea into a reality and created Shofur to basically aggregate charter bus demand all over the country. His angle? High-end buses filled with creature comforts like reclining seats and Wi-Fi and a website and app that made booking reservations ridiculously easy. The platform caught on quickly and now is used by companies like Facebook, the NFL, and Microsoft.
Shofur has now taken their concept and platform to the next level by offering more traditional bus lines, and have currently implemented this new branch around Texas. Think of it almost like an Uber for bus transportation, whether it's for leisure or business. You check out current bus lines on the app and reserve your seat. The app will make you aware of delays and estimated arrival time to your destination.
By using a peer review system, drivers (and companies) are rated on a 5 star scale, with anything below a 4.5 rating not being allowed on the platform. This helps ensure riders are getting the best experience possible. The service is currently available to the "Texas Triangle," which includes Dallas, Austin, San Antonio, and Houston.
When asked where they see the bus lines going next, COO Merrick Levy states, "We plan on aggressively scaling our service across the U.S. We have operators signed up and ready in key markets. Eventually we will create a network of bus lines from coast to coast."
Shofur is in over 100 cities with the app being available for both Android and iOS.