Translink has rolled out its transport plan for the World Police & Fire Games (WPFG) that last until 10 August. It included running special bus services for the Opening Ceremony, exclusive WPFG travelcards and a travel guide to ensure competitors and visitors can easily travel to all the sporting events.
Pic: Northern Ireland Tridents ice hockey team members Mark Kane and Paul Maher with Translink’s Carol Lundy.
Irish Transport Minister, Danny Kennedy and Enterprise Minister, Arlene Foster, have secured an EU investment of £5.8m to help meet the cost of 53 recently purchased Translink buses and coaches. The EU investment has been used in the purchase of 39 Goldline Coaches and 14 Double Deck Metro buses. They came into service over the last few months and are being used on Northern Ireland and cross border routes.
Chairman of the Translink Group, John Trethowan, said, ‘We welcome this EU funding and thank the Ministers and their Departments for their support. We have received very positive feedback from our customers regarding the new vehicles. Passengers now make an additional 22,000 journeys on Metro every month and Goldline coach customers are also up by 6% on last year. These results clearly show more people are choosing to use our bus and coach services for their everyday journeys. This success is the result of continued investment together with great customer care. In particular our Goldline coach customers tell us they are enjoying the free on board WiFi, leather seats, additional legroom and great value. The new Metro buses in our fleet now makes Metro Services 100% wheelchair accessible and the additional double decker vehicles now allow us to enhance capacity on busy routes. We aim to build on our success by attracting even more customers to take advantage of the convenience, comfort and cost savings available with bus and coach travel.’
Translink has seen a 6% increase in passenger numbers on its Goldline coaches over the past 12 months. In the last eight years, the company’s flagship coach service has experienced a 45% increase in passenger journeys and now carries over 3m each year. Translink Metro bus services also continue to perform strongly with almost 504,000 trips made every week in Belfast and an additional 22,000 journeys now made on the operation every month.
Translink Marketing Executive, Ciaran Rogan, said, ‘It’s clear that more people are choosing to leave the car at home and use our bus and coach services for their everyday journeys, whether it’s business or leisure. This success reflects investment in new Goldline coaches last September, the introduction of free on board WiFi, leather seats and additional legroom and great value. Our cross-border X1 and X2 services are particularly popular – direct services from Belfast to Dublin Airport and great value web fares mean better value and less hassle than parking. We have now also launched an X4 service between Derry-Londonderry and Dublin also serving Mid Ulster and Armagh to give people even more flexibility and choice. Our Metro, Smartlink and our “Love Metro Saturdays” £2 day ticket deals are great value and improved bus passenger priority measures in the City Centre mean faster journeys and additional double decker buses contribute to a reduction in traffic congestion.’