05 Feb 2018
A new study has shown that people travelling across the north east can get better value for money by taking the bus instead of commuting by car.
The research – carried out by Stagecoach - showed that people who use the bus to commute between Newcastle and South Shields are on average £1,470.13 a year better off than those travelling to work by car.
The research was revealed as Stagecoach launches a nationwide campaign to highlight the value and flexibility offered through the company’s multi-journey weekly tickets. In Newcastle, the average cost of a weekly megarider ticket – which can be used anytime within the local Stagecoach area over a seven-day period – is just £13.50.
The study showed that in Newcastle, bus travel costs are around 69 percent cheaper than the same commute by car, saving passengers an average of around £127.84 a month, according to the study.
The latest research by Stagecoach, Britain's biggest bus and coach operator 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.
The study found there was an average annual savings of £1,470.13 across all of the routes surveyed - enough to cover the entire annual energy costs for a three or four bedroom house*.
Steve Walker, Managing Director of Stagecoach North East, said: “This research shows it can still be significantly cheaper to commute to work by bus rather than car for many people. The savings could go towards a family holiday, home improvements or more into the monthly shopping budget.
“We work hard to deliver high quality services for the many people who rely on the bus, and our current campaign demonstrates the great value, unlimited travel we offer through our weekly tickets.”
Stagecoach’s findings come as the latest Office of National Statistics research showed a 3 percent rise in the number of households that own a car or van between 2016 and 2017.**
However, research by campaign group Greener Journeys last year warned of the damaging impact of congestion within towns and cities across the UK. The research – by Professor David Begg – revealed that average traffic speeds in Britain’s busiest cities are set to fall to just 12mph by 2030 as traffic delays are expected to double over the next decade.***
Steve added: “Unfortunately, along with other road users, our customers are being affected by the serious issue of traffic congestion which reduces the reliability of bus services, pushes up fares, reduces air quality and undermines the attractiveness of bus travel.
“We are investing in continued improvements for our customers but we need those responsible for road infrastructure to match that commitment by freeing up road space to let buses flourish.”
Stagecoach North East has made a series of investments to help transform bus travel for customers, including the Stagecoach Bus app which offers journey planning, real-time bus tracking, next stop information and mobile ticketing. The company has also introduced contactless payments – along with Apple Pay and Android Pay - across more than half of its UK bus fleet, with the technology on schedule to be introduced across all operating companies this year.
Over the past six years, Stagecoach North East has invested heavily in improvements to its services, including the introduction of 241 new vehicles, worth £37million, for local communities.