Transport User Voice – March 2023 – Cheaper bus travel

28 February 2023

The £2 bus fares initiative

Simpler, better for money fares? We know that’s what passengers want from bus services. The £2 bus fare cap came into force last month and we’ve been asking what you think of them. Will they encourage you to use the bus more? Are you aware of the scheme?  

Many are facing particular financial challenges at the moment. By making travelling by bus more attractive and reducing the cost for those already relying on the bus the £2 bus fare is an encouraging step for passengers.  

In our survey we asked passengers what they thought about the £2 bus fare. Seven per cent said they are already using the bus more and almost a third (32 per cent) say they might use buses more but haven’t yet. 

Over half (53 per cent) said they were aware of the £2 fare. This was higher among regular bus users, with at least two thirds aware. Since the report came out it’s been announced that the initiative has now been extended which is great news. 

In our latest Bus User Survey report, 73 per cent of bus passengers were satisfied with value for money, the highest since the survey began in September 2021. 

While it’s early days, these results are positive. We will continue to talk to bus passengers and use our insight to help Government and industry focus efforts on what matters most. 

What passengers say 

Some passengers said they are travelling more due to the £2 fare​:  

My usual return fare to the nearest town is £9.60, so to be able to do the same journey for £4 for a while is amazing. I have no car so am reliant on buses, so this is a great incentive to have and will give me more mobility and options, whilst saving money also.” 

“It is so cheap and easy to get around by only paying £2. This will encourage me to use it more often.” 

Some people said they might use bus more: 

“It used to be extortionate to get from my house in the outer suburbs to the town centre and not value for money as only a 15 min ride but now I feel it is fair.”  

“I’m aware of spending in the cost-of-living crisis and capping the bus fare would make me less concerned about racking up larger bus fees.” 

Some passengers said it would make no difference to their use of buses​: 

“From where I live a £4 return journey is still more expensive than using a car park in town.” 

“Buses aren’t reliable so I go by car so I know I will get there on time.” 


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