New multi-operator bus ticket introduced for Bristol area

Number 18 bus service pictured in Little Stoke, Bristol. A Wessex Red no. 19 bus passes along the newly-opened Cheswick Bus Link.

A new multi-operator bus ticket valid across the whole of the Bristol area could benefit passengers on routes in Stoke Gifford and Bradley Stoke that are served by buses from both First and Wessex.

The BristolRider ticket, offering unlimited travel for one day throughout Bristol and parts of South Gloucestershire (within Wessex’s zones A and B, and First Bristol’s zones 1 and 2), has been made available for an introductory price of £4.50. It allows travel on almost all the services provided by Abus, Bakers-Dolphin, CT Plus, CT Coaches, Faresaver, First, North Somerset Coaches, Severnside Transport and Wessex.

The new ticket, along with a similar one covering Weston-super-Mare, has been made available through work done by the West of England Bus Operators Association (WEBOA), which last September introduced an AvonRider ticket offering unlimited travel for one day around the whole West of England region for £7.20.

The BristolRider and AvonRider tickets are available to buy on bus, direct from drivers. Both tickets allow customers to hop on and off any of the different participating local bus services.

Talking about the extended range of tickets, John Burch, South West Regional Manager of the Confederation of Passenger Transport, said:

“Through the West of England Bus Operators Association we have been able to create these three multi operator tickets. This is a significant step forward for the region; for a long time bus users have been asking for a product which enables them to switch between different operators services, and now – with the help of all the operators in the area – we have such a thing.”

“The addition of the Bristol and Weston Rider tickets is expected to be particularly welcomed as they potentially cut the cost of travel for local people. Users will, for instance, no longer need to buy individual tickets or separate day tickets for each operator if they wish to use multiple operators services.”

Existing all-day tickets valid only on a single operator’s services are priced at £4 (for First’s Bristol FirstDay ticket) and £3 (for Wessex’s Dayrider ticket).

Related link: Bus Services in Stoke Gifford (The Journal)

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  1. Almost the end of March, and there’s very little publicity about this ticket. Abus buses carry prominent adverts for it, but no other bus company advertises it. Apart from the press release of 19th February on the First website (as per above, which is the only reference I found through Google), I have found no information about it on any website – First, Wessex, Abus or Travel Bristol. If no-one knows about, no-one will buy it and it will probably be withdrawn because of ‘lack of demand’.

  2. I’ve found there’s also a reference to the AvonRider/BristolRider on the April 2013 edition of the Greater Bristol bus map – the map gives the price, but not the availabilty; for this it refers you to the Travel West website, where it is confusingly called the AvonRider ticket (which has been available since September last year, also without much publicity), referring the BristolRider (and WestonRider) tickets as AvonRiders for the Bristol (or Weston) zones. I wonder what you would get issued with if you asked the bus driver for a Bristol zone AVonRider ticket. Apart from the ambiguity over the name, the information on the Travel West website is quite comprehensive.

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