By Andru McCracken
The new bus service transporting people from Valemount to Kamloops and Valemount to Edmonton has received a grant from the provincial government to help provide the service, but it won’t be enough to have an impact on fares.
CEO of Thompson Valley Charters Roger Nadeau explained.
“It’s not going to have an impact on fares because we’re not sure what the ridership is. That is what [the provincial government] is helping with,” said Nadeau.
“We knew we were going to run at a loss for a while. We still aren’t going to make money but this grant will carry us over until we can make some money.”
The fares are higher than, for example, the provincially-subsidized BC Bus North.
To ride from Valemount or McBride to Prince George is just $35, meanwhile a trip from Valemount to Kamloops will cost $99.
The fare from Valemount to Edmonton on the other hand is $124.
The bus will begin running between Kamloops and Edmonton starting May 3, making eastbound runs on Mondays and Thursdays and westbound runs Tuesdays and Fridays.
Nadeau said they are working under a different model than BC Bus North, and their operating expenses are not covered by government.
“We didn’t get enough funding for that,” said Nadeau.
He said what the funding does achieve is ensure they can get started and run regularly until they build up ridership.