Boston College should better serve students traveling during Thanksgiving Break by creating its own shuttle service that runs to both Boston Logan International Airport and the city’s Amtrak stations.
UGBC has offered a Thanksgiving shuttle service to the airport and South Station several times over the last decade. UGBC’s shuttle service is an effective use of its budget of $363,450, but it is not enough to fulfill the needs of the student body.
Last year, UGBC offered two shuttle trips a day for three days during the Thanksgiving season. A small bus took students from Conte Forum to Boston Logan International Airport and South Station.
The program cuts transportation costs for some students traveling during Thanksgiving Break every year, but there are hundreds—if not thousands—more who rely on flights or Amtrak trips but cannot make it into the small buses with limited availability. These students must find other, more costly means for the first legs of their journeys.
The University has the resources to launch a service with larger buses that run more frequently than UGBC’s shuttles to Boston’s Amtrak stations and airport.
The days surrounding Thanksgiving are some of the busiest travel days of the year. Rideshare service prices surge, leaving students with high unexpected costs as they leave campus. Meanwhile, the T journey to Boston Logan or South Station can be slow and unpredictable.
UGBC President Lubens Benjamin said in an email to The Heights that after successfully implementing the shuttle system in the past, he hopes for it to become a “University administrative project.”
A University-run shuttle program would require collaboration between several BC departments, according to Benjamin, including but not limited to the Office of Student Affairs and the Office of Government Relations.
Benjamin said the current UGBC shuttle system works with BC Transportation and Parking Services, which a representative from BC Transportation and Parking confirmed.
The University should adopt and expand on UGBC’s Thanksgiving shuttle service to better serve the vast majority of students that require a train or plane to leave campus for the holiday.
Correction (11/18/22): This editorial has been updated to reflect the relationship between UGBC and Transportation & Parking Services, according to a statement from UGBC President Lubens Benjamin.