Kortrijk, 18 October 2007
UK's PLUSBUS wins IRU Eurochallenge Award
Kortrijk (Belgium) – The International Road Transport Union (IRU) awarded today the IRU Eurochallenge Award 20071 to PLUSBUS, a unique nation-wide integrated train and bus ticketing system implemented in Britain by "Journey Solutions", a partnership of several British private bus and train companies and trade associations2.
PLUSBUS is a discount price ticket for unlimited bus travel, which can be purchased at the same time as a train ticket. The customer pays in one transaction for the entire train and bus journey. The bus travel can be taken before, after or at both ends of the train journey. This “full package” saves users money, whilst reducing the hassle of travelling by train and bus. Door-to-door journeys by public transport are made easier and more attractive, which helps increasing sustainable mobility, road safety and reducing congestion. Today, the system covers the entire urban areas of the 227 largest towns and cities across Britain.
Serge Nossovitch, President of the IRU Eurochallenge Jury3 and Secretary General of the French National Passenger Transport Federation, FNTV, explained: "We were impressed by the ambitious concept, the forward-looking entrepreneurial spirit and the commitment of member companies and partners in implementing the project, which earned them a breathtaking increase in sales of +55% in the financial year 2006-2007. Indeed, this innovative concept can easily become a model for other similar nation-wide initiatives that can emerge all over Europe and beyond."
Receiving the award, Jonathan Radley, Commercial Director of Journey Solutions, said: “On behalf of our Chairman Giles Fearnley, and of all participating bus and train operators in Britain, I accept with great pleasure the Eurochallange Award 2007. In the commercial and competitive environment within which Britain’s public transport system operates, funding and establishing a nation-wide integrated ticketing product has proven both challenging and rewarding. Through close partnership working and detailed negotiation, Journey Solutions has achieved PLUSBUS ticketing across the whole of Britain. We hope that our experience will provide an example of what can be achieved that others will wish to follow."
The jury also commended the IRU Eurochallenge runner-up, the UK company Brighton & Hove for the achievement of a unique public-private partnership with Brighton’s city authorities, making it possible to create a genuine culture of collective bus and coach travel among citizens and visitors of Brighton.
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Press contact: Juliette Ebélé, +41 22 918 27 07, Press@iru.org
1The IRU Eurochallenge Award promotes greater use of urban and interurban public transport by bus and coach through cost-effective innovative projects.
2 Participating transport Groups are: Arriva, Blazefield/Transdev, First, Go-Ahead, National Express Group, Stagecoach, the Association of train Operating Companies and the Confederation of Passenger Transport.
3 The IRU Eurochallenge 2007 Award Jury comprised: David Watson (Confederation of Passenger Transport - UK), Carine Bergers (Legal advisor, Belgian Federation of Bus and Coach Operators and Traveil Organisers – FBAA, Belgium), Mary Crass (Princial Administrator, International Transport Forum – France), Serge Nossovitch (Secretary General, National Federation of Passenger Transport – FNTV, France), Jaroslav Hanak (Vice-President, Cesmad Bohemia - Czech Republic), Zsolt Laszlo Becsey (MEP, Hungary).