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Simpler fares structures could increase bus passenger numbers

Introducing measures such as simpler fares structures could help entice more passengers back to using buses, according to a new report.

The report said simpler fares structures may help to attract passengers, such as zonal prices or a multi-ride/multi-operator ticket or contactless bank cards

The paper on ‘Factors affecting local bus demand and potential for increase’ from the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport’s (CILT) Bus & Coach Policy Group reinforces reports of ongoing declines in passenger numbers.

Between 2004/05 and 2018/19 there were significant passenger number reductions of more than 20% in Wales, Scotland and England’s metropolitan areas, while in London and in the English counties’ passenger numbers had increased.

However, variations exist, with southern England cities such as Brighton, Bournemouth and Bristol, and in Scotland, Edinburgh, seeing growth in bus use. In Wales, the TrawsCymru interurban bus network bucked the overall trend with an increase in its passengers from 0.473 million (2007/8) to 2.033 million (2018/19).

The CILT paper – co-authored by Professor Stuart Cole CBE, Emeritus Professor of Transport (Economics and Policy), University of South Wales, and Peter White, Emeritus Professor of Public Transport Systems, University of Westminster – said that bus demand in Britain has also been strongly affected by the pandemic.

But it adds that simpler fares structures may help to attract passengers, such as zonal prices or a multi-ride/multi-operator ticket or contactless bank cards.

To access the full report, click here.

For more of the latest industry news, click here.

Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. Natalie edits all the Fleet World websites and newsletters, and loves to hear about any latest industry news.

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