Bus awareness WEEK media release

Oct 20, 2023 | Media Releases

People riding bikes through city

Melbourne Councils have declared Monday 23 October – Friday 27 October to be Bus Awareness Week (BAW) to highlight the role of buses in connecting Melbourne.

Working through the Metropolitan Transport Forum, a coalition of 26 Melbourne Councils, the activities include:
Mayors and MPs on buses: a variety of local mayors will be joining with local MPs to ride on the buses and chat to passengers.
Better Buses online survey: many councils are asking their residents to share their ideas on how to make buses in their area better
Try the Bus: Councils will be urging residents to grab their Myki cards and give the bus a go.

MTF Bus Ambassador, Manningham Councillor Anna Chen, said that buses carried one in five public transport passengers – that’s over 135 million trips a year.

“Over 80 per cent of people living in greater Melbourne in are within walking distance of a bus stop,” she said.

“The important role of the bus network was highlighted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Bus patronage levels remained much higher than all other public transport modes as the community changed how and where they chose to work and live.”

State Government research shows that bus passengers are less likely to have a drivers’ license, including a large cohort of student and elderly users. Often users are among the most vulnerable members of society.

Research also found that more frequent services across more hours and days would attract even more passengers to buses.

Buses are great value for money

Around 34 per cent of bus trips also involve a tram or train connection.

‘Taking the bus to connect to a train or tram is great value because on Myki it does not incur an extra charge. That’s great value,” she said.

From 2025 the government will start changing the diesel bus fleet to Zero Emission Buses as vehicles are replaced.

“This will bring in quieter, emission free, modern buses to more people,’ she said.

“It’s an opportunity to take another look at making changes to buses to attract more passengers,’ she said.

Councils are looking for service changes to make buses more attractive, including:
More frequent services
More direct services
Services over more days and more hours
Better connections to other PT and other buses

More info at https://mtf.org.au/

Media liaison: Greg Day 0418 345 829

Buses carry one in five public transport passengers – that’s over 135 million trips a year.