pushing the boundaries within the bus industry

Transdev has recently relaunched their 36 service travelling between Ripon, Harrogate and Leeds.

From what we can gather, the service has remained largely unchanged, and it was the buses themselves that hit the headlines and caused a stir.

According to the company's website the £235k buses have -

'Free superfast 4G wifi. USB power points at every single seat. Double glazing to give you a better view. Plush, leather coach seats upstairs with personal tables and quilted leather seats with a chill-out area downstairs.

A glazed roof, as let's face it, it's better to stare at the stars and sky than at a ceiling. New next stop audio and visual info screens, featuring the voice of everyones favourite Harry Gration. Contactless payments for easy ticket buying. And, Library 36 where you can bring, take and swap books for your journey.'

When you consider the bus hasn't really moved on for a good few years, this is progress indeed.

But current and potential passengers need more - the former need to be kept, and the latter attracted.

The bus industry (service operators and manufacturers) need to be constantly pushing the boundaries of technology and customer experience - in exactly the same way as the car companies do on a daily basis. They know if they snooze, they lose, and customers will quickly spend their £30k with a rival. They spend a massive proportion of their annual budgets on research and development to ensure they are ahead of the game, making their cars as appealing as possible.

From speaking to clients, it seems the bus industry has a lot to learn. No one company seems to want the take the bull by the horns and really challenge their manufacturer to make a ground breaking bus that will revolutionise the industry.

Contactless charging? Why not. Digital advertising in cove spaces? Of course sir. All it needs is one trail blazer to prove that such things can be done cost effectively, and I'm pretty convinced that the herd will follow.

Then those benefits will become the norm, so the strive for improvement continues. Constantly looking for, and very importantly implementing, changes to 'the bus' as we know it.