The PassioGo App Needs to Go


Jennafer Bowman | @jennaferbowman, Staff Columnist

Earlier this week, I found myself sitting outside of the Student Recreation Center at almost 10 p.m. It was pouring down rain, and the bus app read that no buses were running. I was stranded. Thankfully, a friend of mine was on their way to pick me up. When she arrived, the 348-Rec Center North bus pulled up at the same time. How convenient.

The Crimson Ride, love it or hate it, is used by tons of students every day – myself included. It’s a convenient way to get to places when the weather gets nasty or when you just don’t feel like walking to class. They run to certain apartment complexes for those who either don’t have a car or don’t want to drive to campus. They shuttle to the school’s sporting events and have a free van service that runs on the weekends. It’s a service the University provides, and riders can track the buses through an app called PassioGo. It’s free, which is great because everyone loves free and convenient things. Too bad it’s not convenient.

About a month or two into the Fall 2019 semester, the University changed what students call the “bus app” from Transloc Rider to PassioGo. The original bus app was hard to comprehend, and just when students started to feel comfortable with it, they switched it. Now the new bus app barely works. 

The app glitches a lot. When riders go to add new bus routes, it does not show them on the home screen map, which is an issue considering that’s how the busses are tracked. But, on the off chance it does work, the times given for when the buses are set to arrive at stops are inaccurate. Riders have to give or take 5-10 minutes for when the bus will actually arrive. So if someone is running late, they better cross their fingers that the bus is also running late.

Riders should also hope that the bus coming to their stop isn’t out of service. When a bus does become out of service, the app continues to track said bus and makes users think the bus is still active and a reliable form of transportation. Spoiler alert: It’s not. Drivers will deny access onto the bus, and students have to wait for the next one – if there is a next one. I understand if it’s late at night and the bus drivers are about to clock out for the night, but this happens in the middle of the day.

Now, there are some convenient amenities in the app. Users can click on the “Stops” button, and bus stops all over campus and their respective buses appear. When the home screen works, users can also see the different-colored routes on the map and see where they go so there’s no panic if someone doesn’t know where on campus they are. Users can even look and see what buses are closest to a particular location when on the map.

The concept of PassioGo is great, but with major bugs, it becomes a complete nightmare to those of us who use it daily.