A $6 commute with Wi-Fi, USB ports, and coconut water

By Cyrus Farivar

SAN FRANCISCO—In a city replete with not only local buses, and the famously-hated tech company buses that shuttle hundreds of workers daily 40 miles south, a new startup is set to debut a private luxury commuter bus line, charging $6 for a roughly three-mile ride.

At its Wednesday launch, Leap will only operate four buses (with one more in reserve) during commuting hours, focusing on giving rides from the Marina neighborhood in the city’s north, going southeast to downtown in the morning, and the reverse in the evening. There’s no fixed schedule—the buses are just constantly rolling at 10 to 15 minute intervals, and passengers can check the iOS or Web apps to see when they will arrive. (Ars first profiled Leap in March 2014.)

Leap is betting that riders are willing to pay nearly three times what a ride on a local Muni bus costs, and a fair bit less than what a taxi (or its newer cousins, Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar) would charge for a similar journey. What makes it worth that price? Free Wi-Fi, comfortable seats (limited to just 27, no standing passengers), USB ports, plus food and drinks.

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