On Trains & Buses

Travel news, views & information from Europe & North America by an independent public transport user

Service Operators

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Here, I am collecting several service providers in the field of public transport from around the world. It started off being a mainly British and Irish collection but North America is gaining inclusion and other European operators merit mentioning as well. The current pandemic had a huge effect but not all has gone even if a substantial amount was needed to see what survived the ongoing onslaught.

Great Western Railway Class 80x at Stroud, Cotswolds, England

The mix is of road and rail with bus, coach, train and tram operations all lying within scope for inclusion. The last of these was the Cinderella mode until recently and there even was a charge of wasting road space being levelled against tram lines as well. Now, all that has changed.

Other road-based forms of public transport have not been fairing so well though, especially in Britain. Since 2010, service reductions caused by government public spending cuts have led to a loss of faith in bus services that only grew ever worse. The current government is talking about increasing spending on bus service provision but it remains to be seen what effect that will have. After all, there have been numerous withdrawals and some major business failures in recent years.

In the U.K., train travel kept increasing despite continuing fare rises whose ostensible aim was to pay for service improvements. The pandemic changed all that so extra government funding was needed and numerous franchises came to early endings. A few months ago, we even had the announcement of a big change in the form of the forthcoming creation of Great British Railways to allow for a more joined-up approach to running Britain’s railways, albeit one that not only has to deal with central government but also devolved administrations. The position in other parts of the world has escaped me until now but it might be time to check on that.