For immediate release: December 16, 2022

Tired of being ghosted? Metrobus customers now saved from the frustration of “ghost buses”

Nobody likes to be ghosted, especially by a bus. So, it’s good news for Metrobus customers that “ghost buses” have been banished by recent technology upgrades at Metro.

Today, Metrobus customers have more certainty that the location of a bus displayed on busETA is accurate. Previously, all scheduled buses were displayed on busETA regardless of whether a bus was in service or not, meaning that a bus taken out of service for a mechanical issue, operator availability, or other issue would be displayed on busETA but would not show up for an expecting customer. 

“These upgrades to busETA are part of our commitment to listen to customer concerns and work as hard as possible to improve their experience using Metro,” said Metro Senior Vice President of Bus Services Leroy Jones. “Ghost buses are one of the biggest frustrations we hear about the Metrobus experience, and this change will help take the guesswork out of planning your trip.”

Customers using busETA whether on their desktop computer or mobile web application will already notice the improvements. Customers that rely on displays at bus stops will see similar improvements in the coming weeks.

Metro’s improved data is also available to third party applications such as Google Maps, Transit App, and others, and an update to the new data on those applications will be determined by each app provider.

If a bus’s GPS tracker is having technical or network issues, a customer may notice a bus arrive at their stop that is not displayed on busETA. When buses are identified with this issue, the Metrobus team will work to resolve the problem as quickly as possible.  

The elimination of ghost buses comes in the same week Metrobus made service improvements to reduce crowding and improve reliability on some of the busiest bus routes in the District. Additionally, Metro is hard at work engaging the public and developing Metrobus improvements through the ongoing Better Bus initiative.