IT is the pioneering transport scheme setting the wheels in motion to secure Southampton as a leading hub for coach travel.
Passengers in the city are the first to benefit from an innovative scheme launching today offering cheaper coach travel.
Britain’s largest coach operator National Express has chosen Southampton as the pilot city for its groundbreaking new scheme enabling concessionary bus pass holders a 20 per cent discount on their fares.
The deal is the next step in the My Journey initiative, a joint scheme between Southampton City Council and Hampshire County Council to boost public transport in the area.
Tough times ahead due to austerity, says National Express
National Express blamed Government austerity as it warned of tough times further down the road in a trading update that sent shares stalling by more than 12 per cent.
Next year will be ‘challenging’, with rising fuel costs, declining economies and state cutbacks in the UK ‘likely to constrain progress,’ the coach and rail group warned.
NatEx said it would lose £15million in revenue due to the government cutting a coach subsidy programme, and said that rising fuel prices would add £11million to its bills.
• Smartcard technology can now record concessionary journeys on all Stagecoach buses outside London
• More than 200million concessionary journeys a year made using smartcards on Stagecoach vehicles
Stagecoach announced today (Tuesday 22 May) that it has become the first major bus operator in the country to accept smartcards for concessionary journeys on every one of its vehicles outside London.
The technology now covers the Perth-based group’s 19 regional bus companies in Scotland, England and Wales.
It means passengers with National Concessionary Travel Scheme smartcards now simply need to place their card on the ticket machine when they board the bus and their journey will be recorded electronically.
Stagecoach was the first major UK bus operator to complete the installation of Government-standard ITSO smartcard ticket machines on its entire UK bus fleet outside London. The company was also the first to accept national concessionary travel smartcards across its entire bus fleet in both Scotland and Wales and has spent the past year introducing the technology at each of its businesses across England.
More than 200million concessionary smartcard transactions are now made on Stagecoach bus services across the UK each year.
Read press release
The Government’s decision to axe the right of pensioners to discounted, long-distance coach travel is costing National Express £15 million this year.
The Coalition cut the Coach Concessionary Travel Scheme, which paid for half-price, long-distance travel, in November.
Coach giant National Express said that it had launched its own Senior Coachcard, giving a third off fares for £10 a year, but sales had been “slower than expected”.
Without their half-price discount, seniors’ spending on National Express coaches is down by 40%, or £2.8 million, year-on-year.
Leading UK based coach and minibus hire provider, Coach Broker, have just announced plans to introduce extra disabled and wheelchair access minibuses and coaches to their fleet throughout 2012.
Coach Broker offers transport hire services throughout the UK and the coach hire provider is extremely committed to the provision of transportation with facilities to allow disabled passengers and those with mobility difficulties, easy access to their coaches and minibuses.
Recent government statistics estimate that as many as 10.8 million people in the UK, which works out as almost 20% of the country’s population, are disabled. With such a high percentage of the population struggling with mobility issues, Coach Broker decided to enhance its fleet of wheelchair access coaches and minibuses to ensure these individuals have access to a convenient and extremely usable transport solution.
Read more in Coach Broker News
A coach hire company has launched a brand new sightseeing tour as part of its new schedule for 2012 which includes a coach trip around the London Orbital. Surprisingly, there’s been so much interest in the planned tour, that the coach operator has added a second date due to popular demand.
Brighton and Hove Bus and Coach Company came up with the idea of introducing this unusual sightseeing tour and are currently selling tickets for the experience at £15 per person. One complete lap of the London orbital is 117 miles long taking 1 hour and 40 minutes to complete at an average speed of 70mph.
Read more in CoachBroker News
National Express is releasing 1million cheap seats for £9 or less this Friday, 6th January for travel throughout the UK.
Offer available to book between 6 – 31 January 2012 for travel between 6 January – 25 March 2012. Please note that there will be limited availability between 11 – 19 February 2012.
The price includes the booking fee and is only available to book online.
Offer not valid in conjunction with any other discount including discount Coachcards, or any other promotion.
Offer not valid on National Express airport, event or third party operated services.
Please note tickets are non refundable and non amendable.
All tickets are issued and all customers are carried subject to National Express’ General Conditions of Carriage, available online and at all National Express outlets.
Click here for National Express cheap seats for £9 or less
Troubled coach holiday operator, Crusader Holidays, has succeeded in securing a new owner after the company went into administration at the start of the month. Motts Leisure Ltd, based in Buckinghamshire, has been named as the new owners of the coach travel provider, and are already pulling out all of the stops to ensure all planned coach tours go ahead.
Essex based Crusaders Holidays who operated out of their Clacton-on-Sea office, announced the winding up of the business earlier in December after coming into financial difficulty. Luckily, Crusaders Holidays were affiliated with Bonded Coach Holidays which meant that all monies paid by customers who had booked with the company prior to it going into administration would be safe.
Read more on Coach Broker News
If you’re searching for a low cost deal on coach hire anywhere in the UK, then you need to visit the brand new website specialising in the provision of affordable coach rental services nationwide, Cheapcoachhire.co.uk.
This state of the art website has been designed with the customers in mind, with easy to navigate web pages, useful tips on picking up a cheap deal on coach hire and high quality images and videos making it easier than ever to track down the perfect coach or minibuses for a forthcoming trip.
Cheapcoachhire.co.uk operates throughout the UK so whether you’re searching for a low cost deal on minibus hire for a stag do in Blackpool, or double-decker coach hire for a school trip to London, a standard style coach for an airport transfer to Manchester, or a mini coach for a night out in Cardiff, cheapcoachhire.co.uk are able to coordinate a coach or minibus hire service which meets your every need at an all time low cost rate.
Read more on Coachbroker News
Looks a useful website where a quote
As part of our policy of bringing good deals to our customers’ notice, we are pleased to highlight these seasonal discounts from National Express coaches. Click on the image for more information:
A coach passenger travelling on a morning bus service in Ireland last week has been commended for his quick-thinking after he saved a coach from causing a serious accident after the driver collapsed while behind the wheel.
The Bus Eireann Coach service was travelling between Limerick and Dublin at approximately 8am when Mosharaf Hossain, who was a passenger on the bus, noticed the vehicle was veering off the M7 motorway and swaying across the road dangerously. When Mr Hossain looked to the coach driver, he saw that he appeared to be slumped over the wheel and not in control of the coach.Read more in Coach Broker News
National Express have reported a rise in revenue in the last three months to September of 6% boosted by the transport operator’s successful summer promotional campaign of £9 coach fares.
The summer is the busiest period for all coach hire companies and so the success of the £9 coach tickets, which allowed customers to travel anywhere in the UK on the standard rate fare, helped National Express attract new customers during this time. According to the coach operator’s figures, 300,000 passengers took up the £9 bus fare offer which was available to anyone booking a one way ticket, a minimum of 14 days in advance.
The coach and rail operator also credited their Eurolines brand with helping to boost revenue by 6% in this period.
Read more on Coachbroker News
TRAVELLERS are ditching their cars and turning to public transport, boosting sales at bus and train operators Stagecoach and National Express.
Both reported rising ticket sales as people avoid the high cost of running their cars.
Underlying revenues at Stagecoach’s UK rail business grew 8.7 per cent in the 24 weeks to October 16, while Virgin Rail Group, a joint venture in which Stagecoach owns 49 per cent, reported a 9.7 per cent sales jump in the same period.
National Express said third-quarter revenues at its UK rail division rose six per cent.
The company reported a noticeable rise in weekend passengers travelling on what are traditionally commuter-driven routes.
Dean Finch, National Express’s chief executive, said: “We have delivered good revenue growth and further improvements in efficiency and we have clear plans to continue to improve revenue and profitability in the future.”
Read more in The Yorkshire Post
A 81-year-old man who reported losing a holdall stuffed full with £70,000 in foreign currency on a Heathrow to Hampshire National Express coach service is due to be reunited with his cash after it was found at the airport.
The elderly gentleman believed he’d lost the money at some point during the coach trip after leaving the bag containing the cash in the luggage compartment of the bus. However after the loss was reported to police, they checked the CCTV images taken from when the man boarded the coach and found that the black holdall was never placed on the vehicle.
With this evidence, the police were able to isolate the search to Heathrow Airport where the passengers had landed on a flight from Thailand on the day of the incident. The gentleman had brought the money, in Thai baht and Australian Dollar currency, to the UK with a view to purchasing a property here.
Read more o Coach Broker News
A charity minibus has been completely vandalised with every single window being destroyed in what the charity workers have branded a mindless act.
The minibus is estimated to have been worth £40,000 as it was specially adapted in order to transport children and adults with learning difficulties. Now the vehicle is a ruin, with every window shattered to pieces, and damage sustained to the bonnet, window frames, and front headlights. The minibus had to be towed away on a recovery vehicle to undergo extensive repairs.
A shopkeeper reported the incident which occurred in the early hours of Sunday morning when he witnessed people running away from the scene. It is the second time the charity minibus has come under attack this year as in June, the minibus’s catalytic converter was stolen while it was parked outside of a day centre.
Read more on CoachBroker News