NEW TRAVEL APP FOR BUS DAY TRIPS LAUNCHED IN READING FOR THE SUMMER
A positive breakthrough for public transport in the south of England – that’s how a new bus travel app is being described by Reading Buses.
At the launch of the new crowdfunded bus app on Wednesday 27th July, Martijn Gilbert, Chief Executive Officer of Reading Buses, said it was a ‘groundbreaking solution’ which would bring a new dimension to affordable and green travel beyond the traditional local bus network, leading to many more journey opportunities.
The new technology, which is a smartphone app called VAMOOZ, has been created by Harrogate-based bus operator Transdev Blazefield, who launched the concept in May with three sold-out trips to the One Love Manchester concert, and it quickly became a sell-out success with summer holiday trips to destinations in the north being snapped up.
Now the VAMOOZ concept is coming to the south of England , thanks to a unique partnership between between the two companies.
Said Martijn: “We are delighted to be launching VAMOOZ in Reading and the surrounding area because we think it will be great for our customers and potentially could even path the way for new bus services. Our initial day trip program for the summer will especially be great for the school holidays, but we'll see many more trips coming on stream as the app grows in popularity.”
He said the initial schedule for the school summer holidays will see trips running to Brighton on Mondays, Thorpe Park & Legoland on Tuesdays and Thursdays, Chessington World of Adventures on Wednesdays and Portsmouth on Fridays. The first trip runs this coming Monday July 31 and is available to book now.
Prices will be around £10-15 per seat, depending on the destination and distance, and payment is made securely via the app, with the final price for everyone falling as more people sign up to join each trip.
Said Martijn: “This is the crowd funded nature which encourages people to share details of their trips on social media to encourage their friends and family to book too.
“The whole point of the initiative is to harness the latest technology and crowdfunded approaches through the smartphone app. However, we'll also be selling seats through our BusShop in the Broad Street Mall at fixed prices for those who can't access the app - £12 to Legoland or Thorpe Park , £14 to Chessington and £17.50 to Brighton or Portsmouth .”
Buses will pick up from Central Reading , outside the station, Cemetary Junction and in Bracknell Bus Station - all places that are well connected through the main Reading Buses network.
Full details of the destinations, dates, times and current prices are shown in the app and users can also suggest new destinations for the future.
VAMOOZ Manager Rebecca Reeve-Burnett said: “One of the most exciting things about VAMOOZ is it gives everyone the ability to go where they choose, when they choose.
“The customer feedback we have had from our VAMOOZ trips so far has been fantastic and I am certain the concept will prove every bit as popular in the Reading area.
“It truly is a first for public transport in the UK and we are excited to see it being taken forward by Reading Buses, another of the UK ’s most innovative bus operators.”
Martijn added: “The app based and crowdfunded nature of VAMOOZ is also a great fit with our technology and innovation agenda at Reading Buses. We look forward to welcoming people onboard our bright purple double decker bus as we embark on the next step forward in the evolution of bus travel.”
The VAMOOZ app can be downloaded from the Apple Store or on Google Play and currently offers a £5 discount for all new users.
And finally. Here's a nice kind of link......................
NOW SEE THE LATEST ON THE NEW FOCUS FLICKR SITE
On the subject of Transdev, amongst the many images on the flickr site the latest feature buses from the various operating subsidiaries which serve routes in and out of Leeds. These are now in an album which can be accessed by clicking here