Citrus Connection, which provides public transit in Polk County, is partnering with FlixBus USA to expand bus travel between Lakeland and points south in Florida starting Thursday.

FlixBus will make two stops per day on Thursdays through Mondays at the Gow B. Fields Park and Ride on U.S. 98 just south of Interstate 4. The Orlando Airport-to-Miami/Fort Lauderdale ride will add a stop in Lakeland at 9 a.m. Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. It makes a 10:15 a.m. stop on Sundays.

Other stops include Tampa, Sarasota, Fort Myers, Downtown Miami, Miami International Airport and Fort Lauderdale Airport, according to a Citrus Connection news release.

The return FlixBus trip from Miami-Fort Lauderdale stops in Lakeland’s Gow B. Fields Park and Ride at 2:25 p.m. Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. It stops at 4:25 p.m. on Sundays. Additional stops include Miami International Airport, Downtown Miami, Fort Myers, Sarasota, Tampa and Orlando.

“This partnership opens another avenue of multi-modal transportation connecting people from our Gow B. Fields Park and Ride facility to locations throughout Florida,” Citrus Connection Executive Director Tom Phillips said in a news release.

FlixBus fares start at $4.99 and vary depending on how far in advance customers book the trip.

The FlixBus website is not booking Lakeland trips yet. To get a sense of fares, we looked at a Tampa-to-Fort Lauderdale trip. Booking today, it would cost $19.99 this Saturday (the next available departure), leaving at 9:45 a.m. and arriving at 3:40 p.m. The same trip would cost $24.99 if booked today for May 30, leaving at 11 a.m. and arriving at 4:55 p.m.

For fare information, to buy tickets, and to plan a trip online, visit www.FlixBus.Com. Tickets are not sold by Citrus Connection.

FlixBus serves 35 countries with more than 400,000 daily connections to 2,500 destinations.

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