For those of us who drive every day to work and social events, it can be difficult to change our habits, such as by getting the bus. But would your opinion change if you found out that you could save an extra £1,000 a year?
By leaving the car at home, research suggests that commuters using the bus can save around £95 per month. On average, this equates to a saving of £1,000 a year, a figure that becomes difficult to ignore if you commute to work by car.
Saving money and the environment
Irregardless of lower fuel prices, on average, taking the bus is 55% cheaper in comparison to the same journey taken in a car. This is welcoming news as many people become ever more conscious of how congestion is polluting the environment. 55% of people surveyed suggested that they were concerned about congestion and its impact on the environment, with 60% suggesting that they were concerned about exhaust fumes in town and city centres. If more than half are worried about either congestion or emissions, then it is clear people’s attitudes towards using their cars every day are changing.
Savings by region
Stagecoach, Britain’s biggest bus and coach operator, surveyed 35 key commuter routes in England, Scotland and Wales, establishing the difference in cost between getting the bus every week and paying for fuel and parking – the results are surprising.
For those living in the West of Scotland, you’ll be pleased to know that you can make a greater saving. Those who pay for bus fares are expected to save around £2,800 annually, a drastic saving increase from the national average. As well as this, those living in Peterhead and Aberdeen can save £2,000 a year, 100% more than the national average. However, this saving will come at a cost, as many bus companies will be forced to increase their fares if congestion gets any worse; it is expected that local councils should look to decrease congestion in city centres to alleviates increases to bus fares.
Moving further south to the North East of England, if you were to take the bus on route to Newcastle from South Shields, then this journey would be on average 73% cheaper than driving. In the West, for those in Merseyside travelling between Heswall and Liverpool – these commuters could save £1,400 a month by switching to the bus. In Greater Manchester, commuters made the least savings; travelling between Reddish and Manchester meant that someone could save £740 a year still though. Whereas those in Wales who commute between Merthyr and Cardiff can save £1,600 by switching to a bus instead of taking their car.
Further south still, those in the South West travelling between Torquay and Exeter could save £1,200 a year, and those on the south coast travelling between Worthing and Brighton would be saving £2,400 a year – almost as much as the West of Scotland.
Why you should make the saving and switch
Bus companies are investing in smart technologies to make bus travel a lot easier and convenient in the modern age. Many now use apps so that commuters can plan journey routes, and you are now able to download bus tickets to a smart device, saving you time and the need for change.
Contactless payment options are starting to become available on buses too, but most buses will not be ready with contactless payment options until 2022. However, with these added benefits to getting the bus it’s clear that it won’t take long for the bus to be a more convenient, as well as cost effective, method of commuting to and from work or leisure.