Transport Focus has launched the Bus User Weekly Survey. It tracks week-by-week levels of satisfaction with their most recent journey via the mode among bus users outside London.
The first results to be published cover around 500 passengers surveyed between 13-17 October. Transport Focus says that findings from the ongoing work will be published weekly for the remainder of 2021 “in advance of a new passenger experience survey launching next year.”
Those results show that 88% of those passengers reported overall satisfaction with their most recent bus journey. Only 4% were dissatisfied. The balance were neither satisfied nor dissatisfied.
Where satisfaction with specific elements of the journey is examined, the lowest levels are with information on how busy the bus would be before travelling (53%); the number of passengers wearing face coverings (55%); and provision of information during the journey (58%). Highest satisfaction levels were with the safety of driving (88%); availability of seating or space to stand (87%); and the journey time on the bus (86%).
In addition to satisfaction levels, the Bus User Weekly Survey presents other useful market data. The first report to be published illustrates that 12% of people in Great Britain outside London used buses during the week concerned. That figure is further broken down by age group, gender, region and social grade.
In the former category, bus use was highest in the 18-24 and over 65 age ranges, at 18% and 16% respectively. A higher percentage of women had used buses than men. Scotland, at 16%, saw the highest number of people overall to have travelled by the mode during the period concerned. England (excluding London) came in at 13% and Wales at 10%.
Commuting is the most common reason for bus use at 28%, closely followed by leisure on 26%. 53% of respondents said that the bus was the only realistic option for their journey. 41% had other options, but chose bus travel.
Speaking about the survey, Transport Focus Chief Executive Anthony Smith says: “As more passengers return to travelling by bus, we will be tracking how satisfied they are and how operators can provide an even better service.
“Operators and local authorities must continue to work together to attract passengers back by delivering a service that is on time, reliable and which offers good value for money.”
Transport Focus says the results generated by the surveys will be made available on its data hub soon. The first published report can be downloaded via WeTransfer here until 27 October.