First Bus, with operations across Yorkshire, continues to connect communities everywhere, helping people get to work, to education, attend appointments, go shopping or just go out for fun. As the UK has dealt with the problems of the pandemic, its ethic of safety and resilience has meant that hundreds of thousands of people have been able to live their lives whilst still under lockdown restrictions.
Now that many of these have been lifted, however, it’s time to get back to normal and start working towards getting the local economy back there, too. As such, First Bus is making the process as seamless as ever, with features such as its award-wining smartphone app for journey planning and purchasing tickets (known as mTickets).
On the app are other new digital features, including a live “bus map” which tells you how many seats are free on buses as they approach a stop, and a “space checker” tool that helps plan travel up to seven days ahead by showing how quiet or busy services are likely to be for each hour of the day.
Working together makes us stronger
First Bus has come up with some great deals and teamed up with a number of other brands to give customers the best experience as they return to more of their favourite activities.
From September 20, for example, the company is introducing the £1 evening ticket across West Yorkshire, which is valid all week after 7pm. There is a growing list of partnerships with sports clubs like Leeds Rhinos, Leeds Utd, Yorkshire Cricket Club, Huddersfield Town, York City Knights rugby league, York City FC and Leeds Knights ice hockey to offer a range of match day fares and shuttle services to help fans travel sustainably to stadiums.
First Bus has also joined forces with brands including The Piece Hall in Halifax, York Gin, North Brewing Co and 200 Degrees Coffee to build on ideas for leisure travel and socialising.
Martin Hirst, Commercial Director of First West Yorkshire, said: “We’re really excited about our partnerships and our shared ambition to support local economies and build on life returning to the streets of Yorkshire’s towns and cities.
“Collaboration is about us working together to connect local people and communities to great events and experiences in the heart of where they live.
“We know the region can come back stronger and local people getting out, getting involved and getting to do the things they enjoy will be essential in helping to achieve this over the months ahead.”
With the new academic year just underway, there is now also one simple channel for buying U19s tickets in West Yorkshire (available on the MCard managed by West Yorkshire Combined Authority) which has been made possible by operators including First Bus who make up the Bus Alliance and work closely with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority.
First Bus have also frozen ticket prices for university students for the second year running, and as Freshers fairs begin to welcome new and returning students, a range of taster tickets are available.
Youth is king
Indeed, young people will be a major beneficiary of First Bus’ initiatives, including the Crucial Crew service in South Yorkshire that offers advice and information on how to use buses safely, also how to behave and consider other bus users when travelling.
More than ever, this year is an opportunity for young people to take this advice and reassert their independence by discovering bus routes, rather than relying on Mum or Dad. With more autonomy over how they travel, young people can get to all the fun places in town, and there’s plenty of time for more educational visits, too.
A greener way to travel
As one of the most environmentally friendly ways in which large numbers of people can travel, First Bus takes its responsibility towards climate change seriously, with a strategy to reduce emissions and improve air quality in towns and cities firmly underway.
In York, the company together with City of York Council, operates the biggest zero-emission Park & Ride bus fleet in the country.
Elsewhere, Stourton Park & Ride has just begun operating on the south side of Leeds with all-electric buses. First Bus also introduced the first zero emission bus fleet in West Yorkshire last year: Service 5 in Leeds that includes the high frequency/usage city centre loop.
Multi-million pound investment in all-electric and ultra-low emission buses has enabled First Bus to create a replacement programme that has helped other depots in the region to improve their fleets with better-performing diesel vehicles.
First Bus are focused on becoming a leader in the transition to a low-carbon future and are committed to operating a zero-emission bus fleet by 2035.
For more information on First Bus, including its bus schedules around Yorkshire, please visit https://www.firstbus.co.uk and select the region or check out their pages on Facebook and Twitter, Instagram Leeds City Bus Service and