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Alec Baldwin ticks off Greyhound

By A. Pawlowski, CNN
updated 10:32 AM EST, Fri December 9, 2011
Greyhound wants Alec Baldwin to take a ride on one of its buses, saying there's no need to turn off electronic devices.
Greyhound wants Alec Baldwin to take a ride on one of its buses, saying there's no need to turn off electronic devices.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Alec Baldwin: Flying has become "a Greyhound bus experience"
  • Greyhound President and CEO Dave Leach says he's disheartened by the comments
  • Leach to actor: "I ask you to give us a try and see ... that we're really a great way to travel"

(CNN) -- American Airlines has already called Alec Baldwin "extremely rude," and now the actor isn't making any friends at Greyhound either.

Baldwin was booted off an American Airlines flight Tuesday because he refused to turn off his cell phone after the plane's doors were closed for departure, the airline said.

The actor was apparently playing "Words With Friends," a Scrabble-like online game.

In a column published by The Huffington Post on Wednesday, Baldwin said a crew member singled him out during the incident. He also raged against flight attendants who "have made flying a Greyhound bus experience."

That didn't sit well with Greyhound.

In an open letter to the actor issued Thursday, Greyhound President and CEO Dave Leach said he was disheartened to hear about the comments Baldwin made about the company.

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"I'm the first to admit that Greyhound has had some challenges in the past, so I understand that you probably were basing your comments on that alone. But we've made so many changes in recent years to significantly improve the travel experience," Leach writes.

"My guess is you've never traveled with us, but I ask you to give us a try for a number of reasons and see for yourself that we're really a great way to travel."

Leach then touts the hundreds of new buses the company has added to its fleet as well as the extra legroom, leather seats, power outlets and free Wi-Fi.

"I think you especially would find the latter two amenities exciting, because we don't require our customers to turn off their electronic devices ... ever. You could therefore play 'Words With Friends' during your entire trip and nobody would give you any grief over it," Leach tells Baldwin in the letter.

He also reminds the actor that Greyhound carries more than 17 million travelers a year and asks Baldwin to become one of them.

"I invite you to meet with me in New York and we'll take a trip to Boston so you can see first-hand what a great ride Greyhound can be," Leach writes.

"We are not the same company we used to be. We are better, providing a safe, affordable and modern travel alternative to other forms of transportation. Greyhound is an American icon, a proud company that many people depend on to get them to their destinations, the same people who watch your films and TV show."

No word on whether Baldwin plans to take Leach up on his offer. The actor deactivated his Twitter account after the American Airlines incident.

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