STAGECOACH has been confirmed as Britain’s best value major bus operator for the third successive time, according to new independent research.
Analysis published by transport specialists TAS1 found that Britain’s biggest bus operator, which carried 27.5 million passengers on Stagecoach South West services in 2012/13, provides regular passengers with the lowest cost weekly bus travel.
Stagecoach weekly travel is on average 12 per cent lower than the next cheapest operator, more than 50 per cent less than bus fares charged in the capital by Transport for London, and up to 60 per cent better value than the most expensive major bus company.
The newly published TAS National Fares Survey 2013 concluded: “Stagecoach continues to offer the lowest fares compared to other operator groups in the UK regions outside London.”
The latest research findings come after TAS surveys in 2009 and 2011 found Stagecoach was leading the way in helping keep transport costs down for Britain’s commuters and other bus users.
The news also follows a major boost for British manufacturing by Stagecoach earlier this month after it unveiled record orders worth over £100million for nearly 570 new greener buses and coaches.
Stagecoach group chief executive Martin Griffiths said: “We know times are tough, particularly for people on low incomes struggling with the cost of living.
“These are the people who depend on buses the most – whether it is getting to work, finding employment, accessing health, education and training, or spending leisure time with their families.
“We are proud of our extensive record as Britain’s best value bus operator. Stagecoach is also investing record sums in improving the quality of bus travel, helping support British manufacturing and jobs. At the same time, our bus companies are managed locally and they know their local communities.
“Low fares, major investment and a commitment to excellent customer service are why we have attracted more people to our bus services virtually every year for more than a decade.
“Rising costs and public sector cuts all put pressure on prices, but we will continue to work hard to keep fares down and get more people across Britain back on board the bus.”
TAS carried out detailed analysis of nearly 1,000 adult, single, day and weekly bus fares for typical bus journeys of around three miles.
Stagecoach has 288 vehicles operating on over 134 routes across Devon and Somerset, extending into Cornwall. It employs 921 staff at four depots and six outstations.