Going the Extra Mile:
Introducing the New TransLoc VTA App
By Clementine Wiley
There are two types of people on this island: those who ride the bus and those who don’t. For those not hopping around on a private jet or renting a Jeep, many opt to buy a seasonal pass or occasionally buy a ticket. More than just a bussing network, the Vineyard Transport Authority (VTA) is convenient enough to be an island attraction unto itself. The air-conditioned, timely, sleek white buses make the whole island feel closer-knit, making all distances feasible, from the Aquinnah Cliffs and the Edgartown Lighthouse.
Taking the bus, as opposed to aforementioned other means of travel, is a way to interact with a mixed handful of people, whether locals, vacationers, or workers—one of the best places to catch snippets of interesting conversation and glimpse others’ summer lives. As you pass the picturesque landscape, contemplating what to do with your transport-facilitated day, you might struggle to pull out a map and check the number of that next bus you have to catch.
Well, now there’s an app for that.
Nervously under-informed tourists who wonder how to mobilize themselves should be happy to learn of the new Vineyard Bus and Ferry app, which holds all the VTA scheduling information readily available in a step-by-step digital format. The app utilizes TransLoc RealTime, a transit location gatherer, to provide the whereabouts of each bus on the main VTA bus routes in real time. A map of the Island shows every bus as it travels along the route, detailing exactly where the vehicle is and how it moves at any given time. The average VTA user can now track each route’s progress in the palm of their hand.
The app works like this: tap the town of your destination to get the list of relevant bus routes. Upon tapping the route of your choice, you’re provided with the times of the next arrivals, with a map that confirms the location of the bus. It’s that simple. Cross-island exploration just got a step easier.
Ferry schedules are just as easily accessible; all you have to do is touch the ferry icon at the bottom right of the display, instead of the bus one on the left. There’s even a route-based map ready to pop up in the top right corner if you’d like a visual representation of your upcoming journey across water or land alike.
This is a great new stride for the VTA, which provides year-round travel and has 14 routes during the summer between the island’s 6 towns. The bus fare is $1.25 per town, including town of origin. One, three, and seven day passes are great alternative deals, as well as the annual or 31 day passes. More fee information can be found on vineyardtransit.com, and a full map of the VTA transportation routes is located both on the inside of this publication and on www.thisweekmv.com.
The new app enhances the VTA’s user-friendliness, as already exemplified by its dependable schedule, ready stock of maps, personable service, and open-to-the-public Consumer Advisory Group meetings (held regularly, as advertised in local papers). The VTA has proven it really knows how to move forward.
TransLoc RealTime for the VTA is on both Google Android and Apple iOS Devices. For more information, visit https://vtamv.transloc.com/.