Better Buses Resources
The deregulation of the bus service in Scotland means decisions relating to where and when bus services run is reserved for individual bus companies. Consequently, there is no official oversight of quality and provision of bus services in Scotland. Your first point of complaint is therefore the bus company itself.
Bus Users is an organisation which gives bus passengers a voice. If you have already lodged a complaint with the bus company, you can contact Bus Users Scotland if your concern relates to issues such as accessibility, reliability, personal security, behaviour of staff and incorrect fares.
Alternatively, if your complaint relates to changes to your bus service, you may appeal to the Traffic Commissioner if you feel that the statutory notice period was not observed when making changes to your bus service. The Traffic Commissioner also deals with concerns regarding the conditions of the vehicles. The Scottish Traffic Commissioner is based in Edinburgh can be contacted on 0300 123 9000.
More information on the complaints procedure can be accessed on the Transport Scotland Website.
Changes to bus timetables
Bus companies must post changes to bus services and timetables 56 days in advance. Changes to services will be posted on the service provider’s website. At present, there is no central place that these notices need to be posted.
If your bus route is being changed or axed, you can appeal to SPT for it to be covered as a socially necessary service.
Write to Network and Planning, SPT, Consort House, 12 West George Street, Glasgow, G2 1HN.
Fix my Transport
If you’ve had a bad transport experience, you can use the Fix My Transport website to report problems with public transport. They will send the issue straight to the customer services department of any transport operator in the UK. Reported concerns and problems are also put online so that others can read your problems, and offer support and advice. http://www.fixmytransport.com/
Apps and websites for Bus Information
Scotland provides information on public transport journey planning and timetables. There is a mobile version of the site and a smartphone app. Unfortunately, due to the fact less than half of Glasgow buses have the necessary technology, Traveline does not have complete live information on bus timings in Glasgow.
SPT arrange subsidised services on routes considered ‘socially necessary’ but which bus companies do not feel they can make enough profit on. Timetable information is available online: http://www.spt.co.uk/bus/timetables/
MyBus is a bookable bus service for taking you directly from your home to your destination. This can be especially useful for attending local clubs, Doctor appointments and hospital visits. The service is open to anyone who has mobility difficulties or is over 80 years old. MyBus can also be used for temporary disabilities, such as a broken leg, for up to four months. You must hold a national entitlement card to book the service. All the details are available here http://www.spt.co.uk/bus/mybus/
Edinburgh City Council have a neat app and website for finding giving real time information on buses. You can search by destination, stop or route number.
There are also Lothian Bus apps for Android and iPhone which contain live bus times, stop information and routes. Download information is available on the Lothian Bus Website.
First Bus also have an app containing information about fares, timetables and services in Glasgow, Aberdeen, South East and Central Scotland. http://www.firstgroup.com/ukbus/aberdeen/journey_planning/app/
Rural East Lothian Bus Users (RELUS) also run a campaign for better rural bus services. Their website contains interesting articles, links and information.