Fewer cars on the road thanks to Vantage busway passengers
An annual survey of First Manchester busway customers has found that more passengers are opting to walk to and from their local Vantage service; helping to reduce the number of cars on the road.
Following a survey of more than 3,000 customers, over half of the respondents claimed that they walk to the bus stop and only 20 per cent drive, with this figure decreasing year-on-year. Two-thirds then walk to their destination after getting off Vantage, with over 70 per cent of those confirming it takes less than 10 minutes to reach their destination after leaving the bus.
Overall satisfaction with the service continues to be high, at 92 per cent, which is significantly higher than other local services. First Manchester is continuing to support the service by creating a video to demonstrate the accessibility of the bus for customers with disabilities. Customers can experience an interactive virtual tour of the bus and bus stops along the route, as well as see what to expect when boarding and travelling on Vantage buses. The video aims to make travelling easier and reduce anxiety for new customers.
Councillor Mark Aldred, Chair of the Transport for Greater Manchester Committee, said: “Buses have always been – and will continue to be – the backbone of our public transport network, accounting for three in every four journeys made.
“A double decker is capable of taking dozens of cars off the road and bus services have never been more important as we look to tackle two of the most pressing issues facing us today: congestion and air quality.
“The absolute success of the Vantage bus service reinforces the value of our investment in the Bus Priority Package and I’m delighted to see such positive results. If more people are encouraged to leave their cars at home and use our transport networks – and have a good experience doing so – then we can really help to improve air quality and, in turn, people’s health.”
Councillor Roger Jones, Chair of the Bus Network and Transport for Greater Manchester Services Sub-Committee, said: “The Vantage service continues to go from strength to strength and is now a key part of thousands of people’s daily lives.
“Customer feedback is the true barometer of its success and these survey results are great to see.
“This week is 'Catch the Bus Week' and I’d encourage as many people as possible to swap their car for their local service and enjoy the many benefits of travelling by bus.”
Speaking about the service, Ian Humphreys, Managing Director for First Manchester, said: “It’s pleasing to see that the Vantage service is continuing to grow in popularity and that more customers are opting to leave their cars at home and travel by environmentally friendly means.
Local authorities and bus operators working together can positively impact congestion and air quality, provide more services, deliver patronage growth and better support local economies. With this week being ‘Catch the Bus Week’ we hope that customers continue to support the Vantage service and that we can encourage more car users to consider leaving the car at home and switch at least one car journey a week to a bus trip.”
The 4.5-mile bus-only guideway between Leigh, Tyldesley and Ellenbrook is part of TfGM’s £122 million investment package to deliver faster, more punctual and more reliable bus services across the region, to, from and through the city centre, encouraging people to switch from their cars.