Cape Destinations Joining Motorcoach Demonstration in D.C.

HARWICH – Motorcoach companies across the country will head to the nation’s capital on May 13 to raise awareness of how the industry has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Harwich-based Cape Destinations will be among the operators heading to Washington D.C.

Cape Destinations President Peggy Garrahan said that the motorcoach industry has been “forgotten” in recent federal stimulus budgets.

“So that’s why our organizations have come together to go down to Washington and remind everybody of how important the motorcoaches are to moving everyone in our country,” she explained.

Motorcoach companies are asking for $10 billion in grants for operational and payroll aid to be made available, along with $5 billion for long-term loans with 0% interest.

The American Bus Association said that $75 billion has been made available for airlines, Amtrak, and other modes of transportation during the pandemic, and that the vast majority of motorcoach companies are smaller and family-owned.

Garrahan explained that the pandemic has been tough on Cape Destinations. As they offer both livery services and buses, the closures of schools as well as a drop in social events such as proms and weddings has begun to take its toll.

The camaraderie within the industry, though, has been positive during this difficult time.

“There are buses coming from all over the country, even as far as Alaska,” Garrahan said.

“It’s pretty incredible. Last I knew, we were pretty close to 1,000 buses that will be together down there.”

Garrahan said that conversations with schools have begun regarding how social distancing guidelines will be implemented in the future, while it is unclear how that would work for coach services.

It is also uncertain when things that are vital to the motorcoach industry will start again, Garrahan said, making it difficult to foresee when these companies can open back up. She asked government leaders at all levels to provide more guidance.

About Brendan Fitzpatrick

Brendan, a recent graduate from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, is one of the newest members of the NewsCenter team. When not on the beat, you'll probably find him watching Boston sports.
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