From 1 January 2023, 130 bus operators across the UK will introduce a £2 fare cap on single tickets. The cap will remain in place until 31 March 2023.
Passengers are being encouraged to Get Around for £2 by bus from January to March next year, with bus operators launching a campaign to promote the government fare cap scheme today (19 December 2022).
The scheme will help families, commuters and other passengers save money this winter, backed by £60 million of government investment to cap single tickets at £2 from 1 January to 31 March 2023 across England, outside of London.
With the average single local bus ticket costing £2.80, passengers will save almost a third of the ticket price per journey. In some rural areas a single ticket can cost over £5.
The scheme seeks to get more commuters on buses and helps to reduce emissions and congestion by taking an estimated 2 million cars off the roads.
Today, the government has confirmed over 130 bus operators, such as National Express and Stagecoach, managing routes from the north to the south of England will charge no more than £2 for their single tickets, helping passengers with travel costs for education, work and medical appointments as they face pressures from the rising cost of living.
Bus operators in the West Midlands currently confirmed as participating
- Arriva Midlands
- Banga Buses
- National Express Coventry
- National Express West Midlands
- Select Buses
- Stagecoach Midlands
- Walsall Community Transport
(Above list is correct at time of publishing on 21st December)
Current full list can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/2-bus-fare-cap#bus-operators-taking-part-in-the-scheme
In addition to the above, NX Bus are also reducing the price of a child single fare to £1.
- * Child is 5-15 years old and 16-18 years old. If you are aged between 16-18 you must show a valid West Midlands 16-18 card.
- Single tickets are valid for one single trip on any National Express bus
- If you are making more than one journey our Day Saver tickets are only £4 for adults and £2 for Children. This will give you unlimited travel on any National Express bus!
- You can buy tickets from our mTicket app or from our driver using cash or paying by contactless.
While this initiative is to be welcomed, as it benefits those who make only occasional journeys by bus, I’m not sure that reducing the price of a single journey from £2.40 (£2.20 in Coventry) to £2.00 is going to make a huge difference in the grand scheme of things.
Most people who travel by bus to somewhere will usually end up having to travel back again, here in the West Midlands if that is the case then it is already better value to buy a day ticket, and for those who travel more regularly, then there are contactless ‘caps’ and weekly/monthly tickets etc to keep the cost of bus travel down.
This scheme certainly benefits those travelling elsewhere in the country, where single bus fares are more expensive. I’m just not sure what the uptake will be like here in the West Midlands.
Apart from this reduction in the cost of a single ticket, there are currently no other planned fare/ticket price changes, as bus fares remain ‘frozen’ until 2025 in the West Midlands region.