Choosing the Bus for Cooler Months

Published: 30/11/20


Now the colder months are upon us, a lot of us will opt to take the bus. In South Essex, there are plenty of accessible routes and stops by bus, to help you reach your destination in a warm and comfortable environment.

Bus companies in the area are dedicated to enabling as many people as possible to travel across the county, during the pandemic and beyond. Below, we have found some of the latest promotions that will help make bus travel safer and more financially accessible.


Arriva has been making its customers aware of the new onboard policies and restrictions through their social media channels and website. Passengers must wear a face covering or they could face a hefty fine of up to £200. Passengers are also urged to respect social distancing and sit near windows where possible. Arriva is also implementing an ‘exact fare / no change’ policy onboard and encouraging passengers to pay with contactless card to reduce transmission of coronavirus.

In light of the current state of affairs, Arriva want to know about your bus travel needs, and how they can make services better for all customers. By filling in this short survey, you can be in with the chance of winning a huge £100 M&S voucher!
Despite reducing onboard capacity, Arriva is also making an effort to show their support for local businesses, encouraging customers to check out what shopping local has to offer.

In addition, Arriva has various regular savings available, including an incredible family day saver, student tickets and more. Arriva also uses MTickets, so users can pay for their tickets in advance and experience smoother, contactless boarding.


First also has a series of onboard regulations to keep customers safe, including wearing a face covering, respecting social distancing and keeping windows open to keep the bus ventilated (but don’t worry, there is heating on board!) First also has its own app which has the ability to pay for tickets in advance or use contactless aboard the bus.

For travel to specific areas, First has many buses in South Essex that travel directly to certain schools and can offer discounted or even free travel for certain pupils. The student Scholar Season ticket scheme is subject to eligibility through Essex and Thurrock Councils. Find out more about it here.

As well as students, First also have a discounted ticket scheme for employees. The Commuter Travel Club offers cheaper prices by signing up via direct debit, but is only valid for employees of specific organisations. Click here to see if your employer is listed.

First also offer an exclusive 10-journey ticket. The ticket is valid as an MTicket on mobile, and for up to 3 months. Even if you use the ticket just to get to work, you can still make a massive saving. To view area restrictions and prices, click here.

Other bus companies with more limited routes in the area include Stephensons, Ensign, and NIBS . These transport providers also have limited discounted DaRT (Demand responsive transport) services are also available. To find out more about DaRT, click here.

Taking public transport has many advantages. In addition to the health and environmental benefits, you can use your travel time to catch up on work, your favourite show, or even some shut-eye. To see some other reasons why we love public transport, take a look at our travel ideas page, or for more information on how to keep safe on the bus during the pandemic, get in touch with the ForwardMotion team today.

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