The county known as the ‘Garden of England’ is emerging as a testbed
for bus groups to cultivate new approaches to bus service provision



Arriva and Stagecoach have each begun trials of new approaches to bus service provision in Kent this month, with a view to rolling them out across the country.

Arriva has launched a new app-based shared ride service, ArrivaClick, linking Sittingbourne with Kent Science Park. Users select their preferred pick-up and drop-off points and the app does the rest,with trips on its fleet of five executive-style 12-seat minibuses costing around £3.50.

We want to shape the market, not just respond to it

“We want to shape the market, not just respond to it” Alastair Hands, commercial director UK bus for Arriva Group, told Passenger Transport.

Stagecoach has meanwhile selected East Kent as the first area to pioneer TravelHero, its new local transport app. The app is a ‘one stop shop’ for journeys operated by bus operator Stagecoach South East and cab firm Longleys Private Hire.

“It’s at the forefront of new technology empowering people to make choices that best suit them,” said Stagecoach South East managing director Philip Norwell.

The launch of the ArrivaClick and TravelHero innovations follow the start of Stagecoach’s 30-vehicle ‘Little & Often’ minibus trial in Ashford last month (PT153).

Despite these innovations, some Kent councillors have this month expressed support for bus franchising following the publication of a new report on the state of the county’s bus market.


Related coverage in this edition Passenger Transport:

Arriva joins the race to reinvent the bus
The technology at our fingertips is changing how we live our lives and our expectations. A growing number of bus operators are now responding

Stagecoach trials bus and taxi ‘one stop shop’
New TravelHero app seeks to appeal to people travelling between towns and villages within East Kent, including students and young professionals

Kent investigates bus franchising options
Move to franchised model aims to shore up local bus networks


This article appears in the latest issue of Passenger Transport.

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