A passenger survey has revealed that people rate the city’s public transport system highly – but would like to see more buses and trams.
Nottingham City Council asked the questions over July and August this year, based on a similar survey from 2019, to give the public an opportunity to explain what works well and what they feel could be better.
The results include:
Passengers rate Nottingham’s public transport: More than 70 per cent of respondents rated Nottingham’s public transport system either 4/5 or 5/5. This was down slightly since 2019 but reflects the difficulties operators have faced in the intervening years through the pandemic and cost-of-living crisis.
Improvements to real-time information has made a real difference: In 2019 one of the key concerns was the reliability of real-time displays at bus stops. Since then, as part of the Council’s Transforming Cities programme, hundreds of more responsive and accurate real-time signs have been installed across the city. The impact of which is noticeable in the responses to the survey, where 80 per cent of respondents said they could rely on the displays either all of the time or sometimes.
Waiting for the bus: Lights, seats and public transport information are more important to people than technological advancements like wifi and charging stations.. In general, passengers feel safe when waiting for the bus or tram with 94% of people saying they ‘felt safe’ or were ‘neutral’ about it.
Contactless is king: Most people chose to pay for their tram and bus travel with contactless payments, with season cards being the second most popular option, then mobile tickets and finally cash. This follows the rollout last year of Nottingham contactless, a multi-operator programme with a daily price cap making payment for travel easy and affordable.
Frequency is a concern: In answer to the question ‘how could we improve the bus and tram network?’, the key responses were higher frequency and more reliable services. The Bus Service Improvement plan (BSIP) will look to tackle this. Funding has already been issued to bus operators in the Greater Nottingham area to support vital services, maintain high frequencies and expand the scope of the network.
Councillor Angela Kandola, Nottingham City Council’s Portfolio Holder for Highways, Transport and Planning, said, “Good public transport is vital for the success of our city, supporting the economy, green ambitions and daily life of the people who live here.
“The Bus and Tram User survey is important as it helps us listen to the reality of bus and tram travel of our residents, which informs our ongoing strategy moving forward. It’s encouraging to see that work we have done in recent years to improve our real-time and contactless payment provision has been well received by passengers.
“The survey has also given us further evidence on areas of our network we could improve; our ongoing Bus Service Improvement Plan hopes to address this. This funding from central Government is to make holistic changes to public transport – not just new infrastructure but supporting more people to take the bus and simplifying tickets and journey planning for customers.”