Bus services unacceptable to two-thirds of Scots, according to poll

Written by Tom Freeman on 7 March 2018 in News

Citizens Advice Scotland poll reveals dissatisfaction with local bus services in Scotland 

Bus - credit Thomas190

Around 60 per cent of Scots find their bus services infrequent, poor value for money and with confusing information on fares, according to a new poll.

Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) polled nearly 5,000 Scots on their local bus services.

Two thirds said they were dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with the frequency of their buses, while 58 per cent said they offered poor value for money.

Around the same number said information on fares was inadequate.

The report comes a week after the latest Transport Scotland figures showed bus passengers have declined by 10 per cent in the last five years, while car use has increased by five per cent.

Bus fares in the same period have risen sharply.

CAS chief executive Derek Mitchell said: "People deserve a bus service that is reliable, affordable and pleasant to use, yet it is clear from this research that Scotland's buses often fail to meet these standards.

“The responses came from all parts of Scotland but there was a notably high rate from people in rural areas, where problems like bus infrequency are often more acute.

“Having gathered this data, CAS will now be meeting with bus companies, local authorities and the Scottish government to find ways of addressing these issues.

“Our objective here is to create better journeys for the people who rely on bus services.”

The Scottish Government said it spends £250m a year supporting bus services.

A spokesman for agency Transport Scotland said the forthcoming Transport Bill will give more powers to local authorities to improve bus services.

Scottish Labour’s Colin Smyth said: “As this survey shows, passengers across Scotland have found ticket prices rising while services have declined. With yet more cuts this year to local council budgets by the SNP, funding for lifeline bus services is set to fall again and that means more services will face the axe.

“Not only are SNP ministers failing to properly fund buy services but they failed to support two proposed Labour Bills to regulate our buses, sitting idly by as services were axed - and as this survey shows it’s passengers who have suffered.




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