Here to there to anywhere — New private shuttle service offers daily trips between UI and WSU
When the main shuttle service between Washington State University and the University of Idaho ended, a lot of students were left in the lurch with no way to get between the two campuses. Now they can.
Linda Agyen, an undergraduate student at WSU, started Reliance Transport, a shuttle system between Pullman and Moscow, with charter service to the surrounding area including Colfax, Spokane, and Lewiston.
“I know quite a few people who take classes (at UI) and can’t find rides here, so they decide not to take the classes,” Agyen said. “So that kind of gave me the idea that okay, maybe there’s a market for it.”
Right now, it is $5 each way to take the shuttle, with 10 percent discount passes available online. Agyen said the more students ride, the lower the cost will be.
“The goal is that if I get enough people riding, then I can reduce prices for students,” Agyen said. “I’d like to get it to the point where students are only paying $2 if they show their ID.”
Agyen also said her goal for next semester is to increase the time the shuttle service runs so employees who work between the two towns can ride as well. Right now, the shuttle service begins at noon. Her hope is for the service to begin at 7 a.m.
Reliance Transport currently employs two people in addition to Agyen, and the company is looking to hire another part-time driver. She said that, although the service has been helpful to students, it has been difficult getting the business off the ground. There is a lot of overhead associated with the shuttle service.
“Most students who have been riding it or hearing about it really, really love the idea and it’s amazing,” Agyen said. “I thought most of my students would originate from WSU but they haven’t — they’ve actually been coming from (UI), so a lot of the students here do want the shuttle to keep running.”
She said it has been a rewarding experience getting to know people who take the shuttle, even with the difficulties.
“I’ve never met this many people in this short time frame,” Agyen said. “Getting to talk to people on a personal level, a lot of the people who ride are just amazing.”
Feedback from the community is important to Agyen.
“I just want to know if this is something students want or is this something that is not needed,” Agyen said.
Kaitlin Moroney can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
$5 each way
$45 for 10 trip pass