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August 5, 2015

World Meeting of Families - Philadelphia 2015 Urges That All Buses Coming to Philadelphia for Papal Visit Must
"Register Now!"

Registered Buses Will Serve as One of the Most Efficient Ways to Travel to Philadelphia for the Papal Visit This September

Philadelphia, PA (August 5, 2015) - Following today's announcement about traffic, security, and planning updates from the City of Philadelphia, the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015 urges all commercial and privately-owned buses and motor coaches to be registered now via GO GROUND, the official transportation management partner of the World Meeting of Families, at Bus registration for the Papal Visit is a requirement for all buses, including motor coaches, school buses, mini buses, RVs, and passenger vans (8-14 passengers).

"In just under two months, Philadelphia will be on the global stage when upward of 1.5 million people of different faiths and backgrounds travel to our city to celebrate Pope Francis' visit to the United States for the first time," said Donna Crilley Farrell, executive director, World Meeting of Families - Philadelphia 2015. "It will be a visit unlike any other this city, region and nation have seen before. Because of the scope and importance of the Papal Visit, we are working closely with GO GROUND to ensure pilgrims from across the country are able to easily travel via bus to this once-in-a-lifetime event so it is important to stress the necessity of registering your buses through the deadline of Monday, August 31."

Information Regarding Bus Registration

All commercial and private operators are required to register at ahead of the Papal Visit. Unregistered buses will not be allowed to access dedicated bus routes, reserved bus parking destinations, and anticipated restricted roads during the weekend of Saturday, September 26 - Sunday, September 27. Parishes using their own buses must register as the operator.

Buses coming for the Congress of the World Meeting of Families -Philadelphia 2015 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center do not have to register for the time period of Tuesday, September 22 - Friday, September 25. The bus registration is for the Papal Visit only.

"GO GROUND is honored to work alongside the World Meeting of Families as well as city and state officials to develop a comprehensive travel system for commercial buses to enhance the visitor experience during this historic event," said Bill Maulsby, CEO of GO GROUND. "Registration of buses will be required for the Papal Visit as the certifications will allow you to access designated parking locations and bus routes in and out of the city. Travel via commercial charter buses will be one of the most efficient ways to get to Philadelphia this September and we urge all commercial operators and drivers throughout North America to get your registrations in now."

The bus operator is responsible for registration. Parishes, tour operators, and other private groups who are chartering buses should direct the commercial operator they are working with to register now as access to parking space will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. If a parish or private party owns its own vehicle, they will be considered the "operator" and also must register at The final day to register is August 31.

The registration process is simple - commercial and private operators must provide documentation (proof of insurance, safety record, driver credentials, etc.) to validate they meet the World Meeting of Families' safety and operating standards. Operators will also be asked to pay a Base Registration fee, which entitles certification of one operator and pre-assigned parking access for one bus for a 24-hour period. Once the certification is issued, additional buses and parking days may be added.

Those groups who have already registered with GO GROUND will receive information about their parking location as soon as assignments are made.

Information Regarding Hotel Availability

Additionally, hotel rooms are still available for visitors making the pilgrimage to Philadelphia for the Papal Visit with booking options found here. As hotels continue to release blocks of open rooms within the city, visitors are encouraged to plan accordingly.

Co-sponsored by the Holy See's Pontifical Council for the Family and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, the World Meeting of Families is a triennial global event that seeks to strengthen the sacred bonds of family across the globe and highlight its intrinsic value to the good of society. This international gathering will welcome Pope Francis to the United States for the first time in his Papacy. Being held in the United States for the first time ever, the official theme for the 2015 World Meeting of Families is "Love is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive."

For more information regarding the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, visit  For more information regarding The Holy See’s Pontifical Council for the Family, which co-sponsors the World Meeting of Families, visit You can also engage the World Meeting of Families - Philadelphia on Facebook (World Meeting of Families 2015) (Encuentro Mundial de las Familias - Filadelfia 2015), Twitter (@WMF2015) (@WMF2015ES) and Instagram (WMF2015).

GO GROUND is a leading group and event ground transportation management firm engaged in collegiate & professional athletics, special events and corporate travel. GO GROUND is the exclusive ground transportation partner of the NCAA Championships including March Madness, and also serves the NBA, Texas Longhorns, Kentucky University, CBS Sports and other world-class programs. You can follow GO GROUND on Twitter (@GOGROUND).

About World Meetings of Families
Beginning with 1994, The Year of the Family, the Pontifical Council for the Family has been responsible for organizing the World Meetings of Families in Rome (1994); Rio de Janeiro (1997); Rome (2000); Manila (2003); Valencia (2006); Mexico City (2009); Milan (2012); and now, Philadelphia (2015). Since its inception by Saint John Paul II, the World Meeting of Families has sought to strengthen the sacred bonds of family across the globe.


Kenneth A. Gavin
DIrector of Communications

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