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Bus passenger figures exceed pre-pandemic levels for the first time

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Friday 21 April 2023

In March 2023, the number of bus passengers in Guernsey was higher than in the same month in 2019, the first time this has happened since the pandemic.

The number of individual journeys taken by bus in the island increased from 136,543 in March 2019 to 140,018 in March 2023, an increase of 2.54%

For the six years prior to Covid-19, bus passenger numbers in Guernsey had increased year-on-year to reach a record high of nearly two million individual journeys in 2019. The pandemic had a big impact on that trend, however: a rapid shift towards more people working from home combined with travel restrictions during lockdowns and reduced visitor numbers meant that bus passenger figures were much lower than normal.

The latest figures are an indication that the positive trend in bus travel may have resumed. Bus passenger numbers vary through the seasons, and what is particularly encouraging is that this increase has been recorded in March, meaning the greater uptake in bus travel is likely to be primarily from the local population rather than simply a reflection of higher visitor numbers.

Deputy Adrian Gabriel, Vice-President of the Committee for the Environment & Infrastructure, said:

"It's fantastic to see the number of bus passengers continuing to increase, even though more people are probably working from home now compared with before the pandemic.

"Travelling by bus has many benefits - both for individuals and for the wider community. For individuals, travelling by bus is a much more affordable option than travelling by car; you don't have to think about parking, and you can normally sit and relax on your way to work, school or wherever it is you are going. For the wider community, the more people that travel by bus, the more we all benefit: the less congestion there is on our roads and parking infrastructure, the lower our carbon emissions and air pollution, the greater the public health and safety benefits, the lower the cost to the taxpayer and the stronger wider economic impacts."

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