In York yesterday I was exposed to the new ftr bus system brought in on the University route by First Group. I don’t normally like to rant about things because constructive comments are always better, but in this particular case there really is nothing positive to say.
They have brought in a bendy bus system that can seat no more passengers than a normal single decker bus, wasting a lot of money needlessly. In doing this they have also raised the price of a single fare from £1.30 to £1.50 which you have to pay using a machine on board which doesn’t take notes and doesn’t give change. This means that they have to bring in a bus conductor to deal with people who do not have the right money and to check day tickets bought using the machine because said tickets cannot be checked with the machine. Factoring all of this in means that journey times take twice as long as they used to, in fact, so much longer that it is now quicker to walk from the station to the uni than it is to get a bus.
The net result of all of this is that they have spent a lot of money to go into the “ftr” but have made it more inconvenient for passengers and gone back 10 or so years by bringing back the bus conductor. Some people really need their heads testing, especially as the buses are soon to arrive in Leeds. I told a couple of students here and it looks as though panic is soon to set in.