£2 a trip price drop boosts customer numbers as money-saving motorists switch from cars
9 months ago
Operator’s unique ‘Spill The Beans’ research reveals almost six out of ten customers on its buses have access to a car … but choose the bus instead.
An extended Government-backed low fare deal to attract customers back to the bus is helping North of England bus operator Transdev to attract record numbers of motorists to leave their car keys at home … and choose the bus instead.
The Price Drop initiative has cut the price of a single journey on all Transdev buses to just £2 until the end of June, slashing 87 per cent off the fare for a journey from Leeds to Scarborough or Whitby on its Coastliner branded buses.
And as the cost of living crisis continues, Transdev says its own ‘Spill The Beans’ customer survey results show a record 59 per cent of customers on some of its most popular routes have access to a car – but are choosing to leave it at home and go by bus instead.
Transdev Commercial Manager Matt Burley said: “We’re asking our customers to spare a moment of their coffee break to tell us what they think of our buses – that’s why we’re calling it ‘Spill The Beans’! The survey helps us to make sure we’re meeting and beating our customers’ expectations – it’s available on our websites, and in paper form on our buses and at bus stations.
“The results so far show the £2 Price Drop fare deal is attracting drivers faced with high prices at the pumps to leave their cars at home and choose our buses for work and leisure journeys.
“The £2 single fare has helped to generate 11 per cent growth in customer numbers on some of our most popular routes, including on our flagship The 36 between Ripon, Harrogate and Leeds. During January we saw obvious signs of this, with particularly strong gains on our longer, interurban routes where the savings are most significant.
“In response, we'll return The 36 to its pre-pandemic frequency of up to every 10 minutes between Harrogate and Leeds, as more and more people see the advantages – financial and otherwise - of choosing the bus instead of driving on congested roads and hunting for a costly parking space.
“Naturally we hope that having enjoyed our onboard features such as luxury leather seating, fast and free Wi-Fi and aircraft-style LED lighting, many who’ve switched to travel with us will decide to stay on board, using our money-saving day, week and monthly tickets to keep their travel costs much lower than driving and parking.”
Other key results in Transdev’s ‘Spill The Beans’ customer survey, conducted online and on its buses, include:
- In January 2023, across Transdev’s whole network from central Lancashire to the North Yorkshire Coast, 42 per cent of those taking part have access to a car, but chose the bus instead – rising to 59 per cent on its most popular routes
- Transdev’s instantly recognisable brands for its flagship routes – including Witchway and Hotline in Lancashire and Aireline and Dalesway in Yorkshire – are a hit with its customers. 70 per cent prefer catchy brand names to route numbers
- Wi-Fi and USB charging points are a popular feature on many Transdev routes, with 92 per cent of customers making use of them to stay in touch on the move
- While many bus and rail operators have moved away from printed timetables, Transdev’s decision to continue publishing colourful paper booklets and make them widely available on board buses and at bus stations receives a thumbs-up, with 67 per cent of its customers wanting printed guides to continue.
Transdev has been inviting customers to have their say in its ‘Spill The Beans’ survey for 12 months, and regularly reviews the results to find new ways to improve its service. Full details of the survey and a link to take part are available online here.
The £2 single fares made available since September 2022 by Mayor Tracy Brabin for bus journeys wholly within West Yorkshire, and within Greater Manchester by Mayor Andy Burnham, will continue to be available beyond the end of June.