As of 11 January 2020, First Bus increased their Norfolk and Suffolk bus fare prices.
The increase sees the price of annual tickets increasing by between 5.8 p. and 14.4 p. The price of the Norwich Zone day ticket will remain the same on the bus, but will be cheaper than before if bought on the First Bus app. High5 ticket prices remain the same on the app but increase on the bus.
The other change announced by First Bus was that, in all zones, the 10-trip ticket, which allows for travel 10 times within a month period, will now be only available on the mobile ticket app in order to “speed-up boarding times”. Return tickets will no longer be available in the Great Yarmouth Town Zone, Lowestoft Town Zone and Explorer Zone to speed up services.
Their website explained the price increases as follows: “In simple terms it is to reflect the changing costs of operating our buses which increase each year. As we’ve said above, in some cases, it has been a number of years since we increased the price of many tickets and, despite this, we have kept the increase to as low a level as possible to cover these cost increases, many of which (such as fuel) over which we have no control.”
Chris Speed, head of operations at First Eastern Counties, said:
“Over the past 18 months we have expanded our bus networks and invested in upgrading our fleet to improve public transport provision, with further plans to develop our offering to bus users over the coming months. To balance the ever-increasing costs incurred in running a business, and to further improve services and links to community hubs across the city, towns and county, we need to revise some of the fares we charge for travel. However, many single and return fares have remained unchanged, but some will see a 10p to 20p increase dependant on the route and location being travelled. Some of our day tickets have seen an increase of 10p, and our week tickets [an increase of] £1 to £2 dependant on ticket type. This is the first increase in three years that some of our mTicket prices have been revised.”
“It is great to see how people are moving towards our digital platforms to pay for their travel, with over 60% of all transactions now being made by contactless or mobile phone payment. These methods vastly improve boarding times and help with making services more reliable,” he said.