Bus patronage plummets

 
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
Bus patronage in Victoria has plummeted again falling to its lowest level in 3 years. Why ?

Sponsored advertisement

  michaelgreenhill Administrator That's Numberwang!

Location: Melbourne
What's your source?
  YM-Mundrabilla Minister for Railways

Location: Mundrabilla but I'd rather be in Narvik
Perhaps if the large number of passengers who don't pay their fare  and/or swipe their MYKI cards did so the figures would look better.

On the other hand, one bus that I 'would' catch is, sadly, totally uncoordinated with train services beyond the odd service that could (should) connect where Murphy has arranged for a reasonable time to change from train to bus of around 8 minutes.

Sadly Metro arrives 5 minutes late (sorry 4 minutes 59 seconds late) meaning a Vline service is following close behind and boom gates do not open to allow access to the bus stop. Passengers do the right thing and wait. Vline service crawls along despite having green lights by now...

Bus driver sees heap of potential passengers waiting at boom gates but departs anyway............oh well a 38 minute wait all for the sake of a bit of common sense, a 2 minute bus delay and a bit of coordination.
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
Detailed article on today's age newspaper.
  michaelgreenhill Administrator That's Numberwang!

Location: Melbourne
Detailed article on today's age newspaper.
freightgate
This one? http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/bus-growth-stuck-in-the-slow-lane-as-patronage-takes-a-dive-20160327-gnrtdh.html
  Bogong Chief Commissioner

Location: Essendon Aerodrome circa 1980
While I can afford a car, I don't own one at the moment. So I take public transport regularly. But I avoid buses if I can. Why?

  • Many buses that may have once had a fairly direct route from A to B have been diverted down side streets to every school and geriatric home in the vicinity. This is probably inevitable in a democracy where political candidates promise "improved local bus services" in their manifestos, but it does almost double the time taken for passengers travelling longer distances who just want to get from A to B. When I'm aware of circuitous routes like those, I just take an Uber (or if I'm feeling brave, I may risk a taxi).

  • While I'm familiar with a couple of bus routes near my home and will often use those buses, I have no idea of the frequency of other bus routes or what time they cease running at night. So on an unfamiliar route there's a fair risk I may be waiting at a bus stop for 40+ minutes at any time of day, or if I wish to take a bus at 10.00 at night, I may discover that I have missed the last service. To avoid these potential hassles, I will take  train or tram if I can. If they aren't options then I will often just order an Uber or hail a taxi to avoid a long wait in the weather for a bus that may not come for a long time.

  • I have no idea which route 95% of buses take and routes that appear to be heading in the right direction may suddenly head off at right angles and hurtle away from where I want to go. With trains and trams I can be confident of where they are going as the tracks indicate where they run to.

Maybe in other cities without the extensive train and tram network that Melbourne has, people are more used to buses, but in Melbourne most people feel uncomfortable with buses for the reasons that I (and others) have mentioned.
  railblogger Chief Commissioner

Location: At the back of the train, quitely doing exactly what you'd expect.
I hope someone from PTV or the industry is listening.
  TOQ-1 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Power Trainger
I was waiting for a bus at Watergardens the other day, and a man came and asked me if any of the buses went down Kings Way. There was no signage anywhere on any of the bus stops to show the route they took, just their final destinations and what times they were arriving at the station. PTV does produce maps for buses that show streets and stops, so I don't know why these aren't on the bus stops themselves.

They also produce Local Area Maps which show all the PT services in that Area. I don't know why these aren't placed prominently around stations so people can see what Public Transport is actually available in their areas.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
Sadly Metro arrives 5 minutes late (sorry 4 minutes 59 seconds late) meaning a Vline service is following close behind and boom gates do not open to allow access to the bus stop. Passengers do the right thing and wait. Vline service crawls along despite having green lights by now...

Bus driver sees heap of potential passengers waiting at boom gates but departs anyway............oh well a 38 minute wait all for the sake of a bit of common sense, a 2 minute bus delay and a bit of coordination.
YM-Mundrabilla
I would regard grade separation of pedestrian crossings at railway stations much more urgent on safety grounds than to road crossings.

It's Incredible to watch what lengths some people will go to, to race to get on a quickly departing train/tram/bus.
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

A number of reasons why patronage on bus services is not growing  :

1.  PTV prime role of seeing that  train and bus services are properly co ordinated is NOT being done at all .  Services are generally hit and miss with pax being left at stations by badly timetabled buses and a failure by PTV to monitor that planned connections do take place.

2.  PTV re-organization of urban bus routes in Geelong is shambolic, with poor hours of operation making usage with trains impractical early mornings, evenings or on weekends .  One route does not have a single bus stop over 1.7km distance in residential area -  sorta  Basil Fawlty a bus route without stops  !!!!  then we wonder why no one is using the bus . Wrote to PTV twwice still no action, no response , couldnt give a RA  !!!!

3.  Hopeless PTV  again in connecting facilities between trains and buses at new stations like  Wyndam Vale, Tarneit, Waurn Ponds the punters have to walk from the station to the street to interchange between train and bus, when the bus should pull up right outside the station entry .
North Geelong station 150m walk from last stop to the platform on the Western side when the bus could easily drop people off at the station entry.

4. Poor route planning like here in West Geelong we have two routes both on 20 minute frequencies coming down the same street, instead of splitting the two routes over parallel streets to maximize route coverage and minimize walking distances for bus travellers.

5. In developing the Geelong bus network  PTV sent no one who actually planned the network to the public feedback sessions, those were  young PTV spin doctresses who knew nothing about what was planned and had no local knowledge.

6. Timetable info for buses other than on the internet is hard to come by another PR disaster by the PTV with no timetable books here in Geelong, just clumsy A4 sheets handed out on a route by route basis , begrudgingy at the PTV hub in Westfield . .

Is it any wonder that bus patronage is static or declining .

As for V/Line they never mention their coach network, they are only interested in playing with their train set .
  Lockspike Deputy Commissioner

  • "While I'm familiar with a couple of bus routes near my home and will often use those buses, I have no idea of the frequency of other bus routes or what time they cease running at night."

  • "With trains and trams I can be confident of where they are going as the tracks indicate where they run to."
Bogong
This is a phenomenon all over the world, given a reasonable choice most people will choose railed public transport.
Also, given a similar choice of travel times, most people will choose train over plane; why? They prefer to stay on the ground. People are irrational beings. Economic rationalists and bean counters hate this and live in denial, but even they are irrational, they can't not be. Laughing
  melbtrip Chief Commissioner

Location: Annoying Orange
Bus patronage in Victoria has plummeted again falling to its lowest level in 3 years. Why ?
freightgate
This what I said back in 2014/15:

Two hour fares will expire exactly two hours after touch on from 1 July 2014. It used to be the following, two hour public transport fares expire  two hours from the start of the next full hour.

The fare rules has make travelling via the bus to the railway station unappealing and which lead to more people like myself driving to the station.

In fact, I am driving to the inner station like Clifton Hill and catching the train to the city or at worst driving to the city or nearby ; parking there and walking to free tram services.
  BrentonGolding Chief Commissioner

Location: Maldon Junction
Due to a change in personal circs I have been taking the 200 or 207 recently from Kollingwued to Studley Park a few times a week. I also occasionally take the 907 out to Doncaster and the 207 back in when visiting my folks.

The 200/207 is extremely unreliable, a fact which is tempered somewhat by the frequent running. Quite often they run early, up to 5 minutes so you get to the stop on time but you get the next bus not the one you were supposed to get 'cause it's already gone.

The 907 is just awful, I (try) to get if from the Hoddle St / Johnston St stop at around 6.30 to 7pm, it is standing room only and occasionally it goes straight past the stop with Express on the front Destination display. I am not sure if this is an actual express service or if it is deemed to be full but at least twice there has been plenty of room.

In a nutshell I wouldn't recommend them to anyone, aside from the above, drivers are sometimes rude and seem to drive erratically at times, racing up to stops and then jamming on the brakes so that all of those standing are hanging on for dear life or accelerating quickly to achieve the same result.

I am not surprised that people are deserting in droves

BG
  kuldalai Chief Commissioner

Due to a change in personal circs I have been taking the 200 or 207 recently from Kollingwued to Studley Park a few times a week. I also occasionally take the 907 out to Doncaster and the 207 back in when visiting my folks.

The 200/207 is extremely unreliable, a fact which is tempered somewhat by the frequent running. Quite often they run early, up to 5 minutes so you get to the stop on time but you get the next bus not the one you were supposed to get 'cause it's already gone.

The 907 is just awful, I (try) to get if from the Hoddle St / Johnston St stop at around 6.30 to 7pm, it is standing room only and occasionally it goes straight past the stop with Express on the front Destination display. I am not sure if this is an actual express service or if it is deemed to be full but at least twice there has been plenty of room.

In a nutshell I wouldn't recommend them to anyone, aside from the above, drivers are sometimes rude and seem to drive erratically at times, racing up to stops and then jamming on the brakes so that all of those standing are hanging on for dear life or accelerating quickly to achieve the same result.

I am not surprised that people are deserting in droves

BG
BrentonGolding
Another current total failure by PTV  of all modes, rail, tram, bus is lack of any on going out in the field monitoring of service delivery, therefore  "cowboy"  private operators just do what they want in an effort to maximize profits at lowest cost,rip the Government and taxpayers off .  The poor  travelling punter is the loser every time .
  mejhammers1 Chief Commissioner

Due to a change in personal circs I have been taking the 200 or 207 recently from Kollingwued to Studley Park a few times a week. I also occasionally take the 907 out to Doncaster and the 207 back in when visiting my folks.

The 200/207 is extremely unreliable, a fact which is tempered somewhat by the frequent running. Quite often they run early, up to 5 minutes so you get to the stop on time but you get the next bus not the one you were supposed to get 'cause it's already gone.

The 907 is just awful, I (try) to get if from the Hoddle St / Johnston St stop at around 6.30 to 7pm, it is standing room only and occasionally it goes straight past the stop with Express on the front Destination display. I am not sure if this is an actual express service or if it is deemed to be full but at least twice there has been plenty of room.

In a nutshell I wouldn't recommend them to anyone, aside from the above, drivers are sometimes rude and seem to drive erratically at times, racing up to stops and then jamming on the brakes so that all of those standing are hanging on for dear life or accelerating quickly to achieve the same result.

I am not surprised that people are deserting in droves

BG
Another current total failure by PTV  of all modes, rail, tram, bus is lack of any on going out in the field monitoring of service delivery, therefore  "cowboy"  private operators just do what they want in an effort to maximize profits at lowest cost,rip the Government and taxpayers off .  The poor  travelling punter is the loser every time .
kuldalai
Buses in Melbourne needs are complete overhaul. There are simply too many companies running Buses in Melbourne, leading to a shambolic fragmented system.

London Buses is one of the largest Bus Networks in the World. Its 673 routes and 8,000 buses carrying 1.8 Billion passengers annually are contracted to just 12 companies. Melbourne Buses on the other hand with 346 routes, mainly rubbish buses and 127.5 Million passenger trips annually has 32 companies. Moreover most bus routes run from 7 am to 9 pm at Half-hourly, or hourly at weekends. Clearly something needs to be done, however Governments aren't interested because having a decent bus network is not as sexy or as ego building as build a complex rail tunnel or a road.

Michael
  woodford Chief Commissioner

Being the devils advocate here.................

From the governments view how many people are making a stink about the poor bus network, I have heard plenty of news stories about both the Vic country,metro and even the tram network but I can remember very few stories about the bus network. Maybe because of this the government thinks few care about the bus system.

I personal thing the Melbourne bus system stinks, but if few are complaining nothing will be done, the powers to be can see there are other things that needs considerable funds spent on them.

The government ARE NOT MAGICIANS, they cannot just pull money out of the air for projects. The electorate has made it quite plain they want low taxes, THAT MEANS POOR SERVICES, thats the way it goes.
I am stunned at the number of people that apparently cannot grasp this VERY basic point.

Excuse the shouting.................

woodford
  woodford Chief Commissioner

Another point on this subject I have made before it is not really fair to compare Melbourne with London. London has a much greater population in much less area than Melbourne and its been like that for centuries, because of this they have HAD to come up with excellent public transport. Also because of the much larger population and smaller area they have a great deal more resources to fall back on.

woodford
  freightgate Minister for Railways

Location: Albury, New South Wales
Victoria seems to have a culture of outsourcing almost everything in the hope it will be better. It has failed.

PTV lack the courage and the intellect to actually solve the problems now being faced across the state. PTV lack innovation and an approach to service management leading to tired and poorly targeted services. They have a culture of avoiding rail at almost all costs.

Victrack is even worse.

Until the culture at PTV is changed through a mass clean out do not expect much to change.
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

Many people take the bus if it's the only option left (especially in bad weather or where rail lines are sparse - like Doncaster).  It's usually quicker to ride a bike, and in some cases walk.
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
I personal thing the Melbourne bus system stinks, but if few are complaining nothing will be done, the powers to be can see there are other things that needs considerable funds spent on them.
The government ARE NOT MAGICIANS, they cannot just pull money out of the air for projects. The electorate has made it quite plain they want low taxes, THAT MEANS POOR SERVICES, thats the way it goes.

I am stunned at the number of people that apparently cannot grasp this VERY basic point.
"woodford"

What you say is correct, but planning and executing timetables that ensure that the bus doesn't leave until the train passengers have had a chance to catch it doesn't cost anything.
  BrentonGolding Chief Commissioner

Location: Maldon Junction
Bus patronage in Victoria has plummeted again falling to its lowest level in 3 years. Why ?
freightgate
Another issue of course is the fabulous MYKI system. You can now top up on a bus which you couldn't do previously. But not with a card and not with coins. Cash only and the drivers won't accept coins. So some people may avoid buses because they don't carry cash and can't top up.

A hell of a lot more just get on and don't touch on or off. I see it every time I travel on a bus. The drivers can't do anything about it and I have never seen an Authorised Officer on a bus.

I saw a bunch of guys get on a 200 bus in Johnston St, the first guy looked the driver straight in the eye and said "sorry mate" and they all got on and sat down, not a MYKI in sight.

So how much of the drop in patronage is people just not bothering to touch on? The machines only work about 90% of the time anyway and you are never going to get caught!

BG
  501M Train Controller

Location: The Borough
The bus timetables in Bacchus Marsh have been updated to include new services which is good.  However the service that I used to be able to catch to the train station no longer runs near my house.  In the opposite direction it still does.  So now to get to the train station I have to catch a bus coming from the station, change and wait 10 minutes for the bus going to the station.  I just drive to the station now or drive to my destination and not use PT at all.
  mejhammers1 Chief Commissioner

Another point on this subject I have made before it is not really fair to compare Melbourne with London. London has a much greater population in much less area than Melbourne and its been like that for centuries, because of this they have HAD to come up with excellent public transport. Also because of the much larger population and smaller area they have a great deal more resources to fall back on.

woodford
woodford
I am not comparing London to Melbourne in terms of Patronage. I do not expect Melbourne to be on par with London. I was merely highlighting the fact that for a system that has 7% of the Patronage of London there are 32 Bus Companies chasing 346 routes as opposed to 12 for London. The Patronage of 127.5 Million per annum is far too small for a city of Melbourne size. PTV should be aiming for 250 - 300 Million.

Michael
  mejhammers1 Chief Commissioner

Due to a change in personal circs I have been taking the 200 or 207 recently from Kollingwued to Studley Park a few times a week. I also occasionally take the 907 out to Doncaster and the 207 back in when visiting my folks.

The 200/207 is extremely unreliable, a fact which is tempered somewhat by the frequent running. Quite often they run early, up to 5 minutes so you get to the stop on time but you get the next bus not the one you were supposed to get 'cause it's already gone.

The 907 is just awful, I (try) to get if from the Hoddle St / Johnston St stop at around 6.30 to 7pm, it is standing room only and occasionally it goes straight past the stop with Express on the front Destination display. I am not sure if this is an actual express service or if it is deemed to be full but at least twice there has been plenty of room.

In a nutshell I wouldn't recommend them to anyone, aside from the above, drivers are sometimes rude and seem to drive erratically at times, racing up to stops and then jamming on the brakes so that all of those standing are hanging on for dear life or accelerating quickly to achieve the same result.

I am not surprised that people are deserting in droves

BG
Another current total failure by PTV  of all modes, rail, tram, bus is lack of any on going out in the field monitoring of service delivery, therefore  "cowboy"  private operators just do what they want in an effort to maximize profits at lowest cost,rip the Government and taxpayers off .  The poor  travelling punter is the loser every time .
kuldalai
Then that is the fault of the Government. Make sure there is a proper service agreement making sure that service levels are met. Maintaining a close control over both the age and specification of the vehicles. The PTV do not have the same powers as Transport for London, it is just a re-branding by the last government of the Department of Infrastructure, toothless organisation just paying lip service. Zip all Innovation, zip all pride, crappy cheap buses in the main. All on the watch of a Government agency with a care factor of zip. The Bus companies are only doing what they are allowed to do!!

Michael
  BrentonGolding Chief Commissioner

Location: Maldon Junction
Bus patronage in Victoria has plummeted again falling to its lowest level in 3 years. Why ?
freightgate
Last night's 207 service was a cracker - MYKI not working so my second freebie for the week, the driver was in a foul mood and was flying up to stops then jamming on the brakes, at least 2 people's shopping went skating across the floor at different stages of the trip.

But the piece de resistance - halfway up Studley Park Hill someone pressed the stop button. When the bus had come to a halt a customer in a wheelchair came to the front of the bus to get off and started chastising the driver. She had asked to be notified of the Clarke St Abbotsford stop as she was not a local. The driver had "forgotten". I can't imagine that it would be a pleasant experience to wheel a chair DOWN that rather steep hill.

BG

Sponsored advertisement

Display from:   

Quick Reply

We've disabled Quick Reply for this thread as it was last updated more than six months ago.