96% of users are satisfied with operator’s service

Lothian Buses was the highest rated operator of the 36 bus operators included in the 2013 Bus Passenger Survey.

The survey, which is undertaken by Passenger Focus, is usually restricted to operators in England, outside of London. However, council-owned Lothian was one of two Scottish operators included in the survey for the first time in 2013 – the other was First Glasgow.

An impressive 96% of bus users said they were satisfied with Lothian’s overall service. The company was one of 13 operators that achieved an overall satisfaction rating of 90% or more. This group also included two other municipal operators, Reading Buses and Ipswich Buses, five Stagecoach subsidiaries and two FirstGroup firms.

All of the major bus groups achieved an improvement in their overall satisfaction ratings, with First and National Express closing the gap on Arriva so that all three groups achieved a score of 86%. Stagecoach, however, remained ahead of the pack, increasing its score from 86% to 90%.

The biggest improvement in satisfaction was achieved by Arriva in Milton Keynes (up 12 percentage points 84%). This was followed by an eight percentage point improvement at Ipswich Buses, Stagecoach in Kent, National Express West Midlands and Arriva in Northumberland.

The only operator in the survey to experience a decline in satisfaction was Arriva in West Yorkshire.

Many operators achieved increased satisfaction with value for money. The largest increase was at First in Manchester, where fares were slashed last year. Its value for money rating leapt from 40% to 71%.


This article appears inside the latest issue of Passenger Transport.

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