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Posted: Tuesday, 13 May 2014 6:52AM

New Orleans to Orlando for a dollar!?!

New Orleans travelers will now have another way to reach destinations in Alabama and Florida.

Megabus.com, which has been offering service between New Orleans and Baton Rouge for a dollar since late last year, is expanding its service out of the Crescent City.

"We thought there was a lot of interest in Florida from New Orleans," says Mike Alvich, Megabus vice president of marketing and public relations.

"So, you can now go from New Orleans to Tallahassee, to Gainesville and to Orlando...any destination for a dollar."

There's also a stop in Mobile on the way.

Buses will leave from Elysian Fields Avenue between St. Claude Avenue and Rampart streets twice daily and reach Orlando in 11 hours and 15 minutes.

The new service begins on Thursday, May 15th.

"We have served Florida since 2011, and we decided it was time to expand," said Alvich. "We thought one of the routes that would be very convenient to us would be the route that went to New Orleans."

The express bus company will be running a special promotion for trips between May 15 and 21 to introduce the new destinations.

"Between May 15th and May 21st...that first week, all the seats are going to be a dollar," Alvich says. "81 seats on every one of those double-deckers are going to be a dollar."

Normally, those one dollar seats are on a 'first come, first served' basis.

"All the fares on all our buses start at a dollar. Once the one dollar fares are sold out, then the fare goes up to the next increment, which might be three dollars. Once that's sold out it goes up to the next one...it might be seven, and so forth."

"The key to the lowest fares is booking 30 to 45 days in advance," says Alvich. "If you can book 30 to 45 days before you're ready to travel, you're almost always assured of getting all of those very, very low fares. The one dollar fares go quickly, but there are many other great fares available if you book early."

The lowest fares are normally on Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday. Prices increase as the travel date gets closer, encouraging travelers to book early to secure the lowest rates.

"The highest fare is still going to be the most affordable fare in the marketplace...equal to or less than any other bus company...significantly less than an airline, about 70 to 75 percent less than an airline fare."

Alvich says the buses are state-of-the-art, green-certified double-decker buses with free Wi-Fi, restrooms and are wheelchair accessible.

Megabus.com expects to bring in an additional 47,000 people a year into New Orleans with the new route. It will be the 12th Megabus route out of New Orleans.

New routes usually last a minimum of six to 12 months before the company decides whether to continue offering service.

For more information on Megabus service, click here

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