The price freeze comes as The West Midlands has secured government money to improve a range of bus services. £88 million has been allocated to the region as part of the Government’s Bus Service Improvement Plan.
|Mr Street made the announcement in front of one of Coventry’s fully electric buses. |
The city is bidding to become the UK’s first all-electric bus city by 2025.
Some of the plan’s key features include lower fares, incentives for new passengers, greater operating hours, and increased frequency. It also aims to integrate the bus service with other forms of transport more effectively and to employ more uniformed safety officers.
West Midlands Mayor Andy Street said: “This is a really good response from National Express West Midlands that addresses cost of living issues head-on. We are announcing today that fares will be frozen for three more years.
“Last year they were reduced by 15 per cent on average and held for five years before then, so that means fares have not gone up across the West Midlands for over ten years. It's a wonderful move, showing people we are thinking about the cost of living.”
Mr Street said the £88 million will be used in a number of ways: “Some of it goes to subsidise fares, some will go to support un-economic that we want to run, some will go to improved information for passengers, and actually some goes to improve the infrastructure on.”
He added that in the push for net-zero, the price freeze should encourage commuters to ditch cars in favour of public transport.
“The price of motoring is going up rapidly, so this is actually giving a real incentive for people to come and use the bus. If you are a commuter by bus, the fare reductions last year were worth about £200.
“We've now got 10% inflation, so the real saving is growing. It is genuinely hundreds of pounds a year that this will save passengers.”
See also '£2 Bus Journeys for Manchester, West Yorkshire & Liverpool' click here