megabus.com, Europe's leading low fares coach operator has announced a new service linking Paris and Toulouse with fares from just €1.
It is the first domestic service to be operated by megabus.com in
France. It comes as the company, which has been expanding rapidly in
mainland Europe, continues to press for changes to outdated rules which
for years have restricted customers coach travel within France.
Tickets for the new services, which start on Monday 9 March, are on sale now at www.megabus.com.
There will be one overnight journey each day in each direction between
Paris and Toulouse, with a journey time of around eight and a half
hours. The service is part of the existing route which links London,
Paris, Toulouse and Barcelona, but until now megabus.com has been
prevented from carrying customers who want to travel between Paris and
Coach operators are still banned from operating domestic services in
France, unless special "cabotage" approval is given. Even then, less
than 50% of the seats sold can be used by customers travelling between
cities in France. The other seats must remain empty or be filled with
customers travelling from or to countries outside French borders.
Edward Hodgson, Managing Director of megabus.com, said: "People in
France love our service, but until now they have been prevented from
enjoying the benefits of our low cost coach travel between towns and
cities in their own country. You could travel all the way from Paris to
London, but you were not allowed to travel from Paris to Toulouse. In
2015, that is a bizarre state of affairs.
"After spending more than a year pressing the authorities to allow us to
offer a service, we are pleased we have finally been given approval. We
aim to offer the lowest cost travel of any transport mode and we are
confident this will open up travel to people on low incomes. It will
also help the economy by making it easier to move between these two key
cities for education, employment, business or leisure activities."
The number of passengers using megabus.com's growing coach network in
Europe has increased by more than 60% in the last year as the company
continues to transform travel options for passengers. megabus.com
already carries more than 15 million passengers a year across Europe and
The French Government has begun the process to modernise the law and
make it easier to operate inter-city coach services within the country.
Legislation is currently being progressed through the French Parliament.
Mr Hodgson added: “We support the steps being taken by the government
to modernise the system. It is important that this legislation is passed
without delay so consumers can benefit quickly. Only by fully
modernising the system will people in France enjoy the great benefits
that coach travel offers and which can complement the rail network.
“Our experience in the UK has shown that having modern rules for
coaches benefits all public transport. We have seen a growing number of
people use coach services in the UK and at the same time we have had the
fastest growing rail network in Europe. That is a great result for
everyone and means people have access to even more greener public
For travel during the first week of the new service, at least 10 tickets
on each service will be priced at €1.
Thereafter, megabus.com has
confirmed that there will be travel for €1 on every journey between
Paris and Toulouse. All other fares on the route will also represent
excellent value for money, particularly when compared to other modes of
transport. The current average fare on the megabus.com network in
mainland Europe is €15.
megabus.com uses bigger coaches with more seats carrying up to 72
people, compared to other operators which tend to have less seats.
This allows the company to have a low cost per passenger and helps keep
fares down to provide outstanding value for money.
megabus.com was launched in the UK in 2003 and expanded its services to
North America in 2006. The company launched low-cost coach services
between London and mainland Europe in 2012 and now links around 110
destinations in the UK and Europe. The European network includes Paris,
Amiens, Amsterdam, Brussels, Ghent, Antwerp, Rotterdam, Toulouse,
Barcelona, Brussels, Lille, Luxembourg, Frankfurt, Stuttgart and Munich.
Services have proved very popular with families, students and tourists
looking to save money on their travel and spend extra on entertainment
when they arrive at their destination. Passengers travel on
state-of-the-art coaches featuring free wi-fi so they can stay connected
on the move.
All megabus.com drivers undertake a detailed operational and customer
service training programme, including route familiarisation and driving
assessments. The training is part of
an EU standard qualification for professional bus, coach and lorry
drivers. megabus.com ensures full compliance with relevant EU working
time legislation and the company also has stricter maintenance standards
than legal requirements as part of its commitment to safety.
megabus.com offers French, Italian, German, English, Spanish and Dutch language websites.
The success of megabus.com’s
services has seen it create more than 400 jobs over the past decade in
the UK and Europe and a further 1,000 jobs in North America.