Review: Taking the MegaBus from Montreal to Toronto

Long story short, taking the Megabus is my new preferred way to get to Toronto if I have to.

You can get a one-way ticket from $18 to $55 a trip, and on average a ticket costs $38 for a half-filled bus.

If you go on off peak hours, or when people haven’t bought many tickets, then the price can go as low as $18.

I paid about $100 in total, but that’s because I miscalculated and had to come back a day early to start on a contract in another city…

Comparing it to driving to Toronto ($60 round trip by car)

  • About the same length of time to get there (7 hours)
  • Same cost of gas as well, but I booked my last ticket at $18!! ONE-WAY! Gas is at least $30
  • Kind of sucks worse because you don’t have your own music or space
  • …but you don’t have to try and stay awake to drive
  • Also cannot bring more than 1 suitcase, 1 carry-on and 1 purse (not great if you were moving stuff, like us)
  • Not great for people with motion sickness (me) because it rocks back and forth
  • Can’t make any stop or rest anywhere you want to stretch your legs
  • Internet is spotty on the bus, but at least you have it for free!!
  • Has a table to work on in the lower level (it’s a double-decker) with power outlets

Comparing it to taking ViaRail ($180 round trip by train)

  • ViaRail CLAIMS to get you there in 4-5 hours, but they’re 99% always delayed
  • Only 2 hours more on the bus, and you’re paying less than half the price for a round trip
  • In the end, the bus also drops you right on Bay & Dundas rather than at Union Station
  • …which made for a much shorter TTC trip to get to my parents’
  • The comfort level is the same — tables, plugs in the vehicle
  • …and motion sickness is always a problem because both vehicles rock side to side
  • Can’t make a stop or rest anywhere you want to stretch your legs
  • The bus doesn’t offer food or snacks to buy, but if you’re organized, you don’t care
  • Internet is $10 for 24 hours on the train, and is just as spotty as on the bus
  • Both have bathrooms

In conclusion?

If you aren’t picky about amenities like food and drinks available to purchase on board, and don’t mind sitting still for about 3.5 hours (you get a 20 minute break in between halfway through), then go with the Megabus.

It wasn’t bad at all. It was better than I expected, and you even get both seats to yourself in a lot of cases!

I didn’t have to share my row with anyone, and I just listened to my iPod there and back with my Bose headphones to drown out the hum of the bus.

Highly recommended over the train, and on par with the car if you aren’t driving the whole 7 hours.

About the Author

Just a girl trying to find a balance between being a Shopaholic and a Saver. I cleared $60,000 in 18 months earning $65,000 gross/year. Now I am self-employed, and you can read more about my story here, or visit my other blog: The Everyday Minimalist.