KCTI to open bus route between Prince Albert and Saskatoon

KCTI director Harkanwal Singh stands in front of a company bus. KCTI plans to open a Prince Albert to Saskatoon bus route following the success of their Saskatoon to Edmonton line. -- Submitted photo.

After a successful first year of operations, a Saskatchewan bus line is looking to expand back into Prince Albert.

KCTI started operating a five-day-a-week Saskatoon to Edmonton line in November 2018. The results were good enough that they’ve decided to open a second route from Prince Albert to Saskatoon.

“It was an idea in our mind that once we are set up on this (Saskatoon to Edmonton) route, then we will extend our branches,” KCTI Travel Director Harkanwal Singh said during a phone interview on Thursday. We were getting numerous calls from Prince Albert and Regina area that they need some kind of service, then we decided that now was the time to start these routes.”

KCTI plans to offer rides five days a week, excluding Wednesday and Saturday. They’ll start with a 15-seat bus, but have plans to switch to a 24-seater should they see an increase in demand.

Singh said they already have a significant number of Prince Albert riders using their Saskatoon to Edmonton service, and their feedback helped convince the company to expand once again.

“We are getting a lot of calls from Prince Albert (asking,) ‘are you not providing a service from Prince Albert?’” he said. “So it was easy for us to calculate the figures a little bit and say, ‘okay, there are people who are willing to get the service from Prince Albert as well.’”

This is KCTI’s second foray into the Prince Albert transport market. They started running a similar five-day-a-week service to La Ronge in August 2018, but closed just two months later.

Singh said there wasn’t enough ridership to support that route, however he’s confident things will be different this time around.

“I believe there are a lot of people who have to travel to Saskatoon from Prince Albert for their appointments,” he said.

The new route will leave Prince Albert at 6:45 a.m. every Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Singh said they would consider adding a sixth day of service if demand was high enough.

A complete schedule, including arrival and departure times, pickup and drop-off locations, and ticket prices, will be available at www.kcti.ca starting on Saturday, Nov. 30. The route officially opens on Sunday, Dec. 1.