On 24 June, bus line 666 of PKS Gdynia will rebrand itself with a new number, Source: PKS Gdynia

Polish bus line 666 to Hel to become 669… still funny

Polish bus line 666 to Hel to become 669… still funny

The Gdynia public transit operator yielded to pressure from religious authorities who were accusing it of promoting Satanism

PKS Gdynia, the public transit operator serving bus lines in the vicinity of this Polish Baltic city, announced on Monday that it intends to change the numbering on one of its lines 666 to 669. The line in question links the village of Debki to the town of Hel. It’s the name of the second terminus that inspired the tongue-in-cheek number assigned to the bus service – and we might say a refreshing show of sense of humour on the part of a usually-humourless municipal transit company.

In reality, there’s nothing hellish about the bus line, a scenic route which follows the Baltic coastline and ends in Hel, an idyllic and quaint sea resort located at the tip of a long sandbar-type peninsula. Still, it seems that Polish activists of the Catholic Church couldn’t share in the laughter, much as they’d tried we assume, and kept pressuring PKS Gdynia to change the numbering of the bus line with the argument that it promoted Satanism and “anti-Christian propaganda”.

Their complaints date at least back to 2018, but it seems that their bugging and lobbying has finally produced a result and the public transport company has decided to give in. They announced that the last number will be flipped from 6 to 9, so it will be “less controversial and less conspicuous”, as quoted by Notes from Poland.

We, however, think that they did their best to retain some of the naughty humour in the numbering, and hopefully, this time around no one will wise up to raise another complaint.

Creative marketing trick

Given that despite its scenic location, Hel isn’t a global summer destination powerhouse, the bus line 666 number was a clever and cost-free marketing gimmick to promote it. In a world where social media viral popularity is king, it would be silly not to jump on the opportunity.

And indeed, many tourists had come from far just to take a ride on bus line 666 and in the process, they got to discover that Poland can also be a sun, sand and sea destination.

That’s why, after the number change announcement was made, social media accounts boiled with complaints and demands to keep the original number. Who knows, maybe the public mood will eventually prevail again, but until then your last opportunity to ride on line 666 is until 24 June when the change will enter into force.



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