New national research has found Tyne and Wear commuters can save around £1,150 per year by catching the bus instead of travelling to work by car - despite falling fuel prices at the pumps.
In the north-east, taking the Stagecoach X34 bus service between South Shields and Newcastle was up to £1,150 per year cheaper than driving. The X63 service from Killingworth to Newcastle was found to be over £960 cheaper and from Kingston Park to Newcastle on the X47 saved almost £800 than travelling by car.
Research by Stagecoach covered around 35 key commuter routes in England, Scotland and Wales. It compared the weekly price of hopping on the bus with the cost of fuel and car parking for the same journeys. Bus travel costs are around 55 per cent cheaper than the same commute by car, saving passengers an average of more than £90 a month, according to the study. The savings - even with fuel prices being at their lowest levels for six years - would be enough to cover the entire annual energy costs for a medium-sized house*.
Phil Medlicott, Managing Director of Stagecoach North East, said: “Fuel prices are at their lowest level for six years, but it is still miles cheaper to commute to work by bus for many people across the region.
"The average savings would pay a big chunk of people's annual energy bills and for some it would fund the cost of a family holiday for a week in the sun in Florida.
"It's also easier than ever before to catch the bus, with smart ticketing, bus tracking available via your smartphone and free Wi-Fi on many of our new buses."
Stagecoach works with other major public transport groups in the UK, as well as campaign group Greener Journeys and local authorities to attract more people out of their cars and on to public transport to reduce pollution and congestion in the UK’s towns and cities.
The company is currently offering VIP day tickets** – which provide unlimited travel within a specific local area – for just £2 to passengers aged under 19 in a special promotion. Stagecoach is also the only bus operator to offer a nationwide discount for jobseekers, giving those with a JobCentre Plus travel card a 50 percent discount on their bus travel to help them find employment.