Working in partnership with London TravelWatch

Passenger Voice April 2016: How satisfied are bus passengers?

04 April 2016

While value for money ratings vary widely across the country bus passengers are generally content with their service, according to this year’s Bus Passenger Survey.

We spoke to more than 40,000 passengers and almost nine in 10 of all passengers were satisfied with their local bus service.

But while many services are delivering their passengers’ needs others are less consistent on the basics like reliably running to time or providing a value for money service.

David Sidebottom, passenger director of the independent watchdog, said:

“Passengers tell us that they want a bus service that is punctual, reliable and offers value for money. Such a wide range of value for money and punctuality scores across the country shows there is still room for improvement.

“With lots of debate and decisions being made about how bus services up and down the country are run we hope that government, transport authorities and bus companies work together to use these findings to improve the things that matter most for passengers – a consistent, punctual, reliable and value for money bus service.

“Understanding what drives improved passenger satisfaction, and then delivering that more consistently, is one way of getting more people to use buses.”

Fare-paying passenger satisfaction with value for money ranged from 41 per cent to 80 per cent (averaging 63 per cent) with a gulf of 39 percentage points between the highest and lowest area scores.

We know there are increasingly significant challenges facing bus operations in some town and city centres due to increased traffic congestion. Satisfaction with punctuality ranged from 64 per cent to 84 per cent (averaging 75 per cent) which is down from the 2014 figure of 77 per cent.

The Bus Passenger Survey gives a picture of satisfaction with bus travel that includes views on the bus stop, waiting for the bus, on the bus, the outside of the bus and the bus driver as well as overall satisfaction with that bus journey and value for money.

 While some bus services are being cut because of the continued pressure on public and private sector budgets it makes it even more important that services are built around the needs of passengers to encourage existing users to make more journeys and seek out more people to be the bus passenger of tomorrow.

To download the Bus Passenger Survey report click here or to explore it further via our data explorer click here.

Our recently published report on passengers’ trust in and relationship with the bus industry, Bus passengers have their say: Trust, what to improve and using buses more, can also be found here.

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