When I lived in the United States I often used the public buses. In Portland a ride on the Tri-Met Bus is $2.35 and a ride on the New York City Buses is $2.50. In Cuenca a ride on the Blue Bus is 25 cents. The good news is that the bus system ( 28 lines) is safe, efficient, and I have never waited more than 5 minutes for a bus. The bad news is that it's not handicap friendly and the exhaust from the diesel fumes are very smelly.
Riding the bus is always an adventure. Don't tarry getting on the bus because the driver waits for no one. The bus often moves as you are getting your second foot on the step. Always hold on to the seat or banister because most bus drivers take off and stop abruptly. Don't assume a bus will stop for you just because you're standing at a bus stop. Yours truly found out the hard way. The correct protocol is to extend your arm out at elbow height. In the video you can see several passengers exhibit the correct method.
There is a great free guide to the bus system at the Tourist office opposite Parque Calderon. My goal is to ride all the bus routes and report on the most interesting rides. In eight weeks I have been a passenger on 4 bus routes. Just 24 more to go. Mas tarde ( more later)