Harrogate District Chamber of Commerce News


2 Jan 2018 by Ben Mansfield

Intercity express bus service offers free travel to fed-up train commuters facing big fare rises between Leeds and Manchester

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Rail commuters between two of the North’s biggest cities facing inflation-busting January fare rises on top of relentless overcrowding, strikes and delays are being thrown a January lifeline.

Cityzap, the fast and friendly motorway express bus service between Leeds and Manchester, is offering free travel throughout January to anyone with a valid rail ticket or pass between the two cities – just as train passengers returning to work face the biggest rise in season ticket prices for five years.

The amazing deal is being offered to entice fed-up train commuters to give the bus a try – and Cityzap’s operators Transdev are confident that its range of on-board high-tech facilities, plus the offer of a comfortable quilted leather seat, can leave the trains – and many of their long-suffering passengers - standing.

Transdev CEO Alex Hornby said: “Free Wi-Fi, USB power, and free online e-books, magazines and games sound like things from the future on the railways, but we have them all right now on Cityzap.

“We also offer that most prized attraction of all to train commuters who know only too well what it’s like to have to stand every day – a comfy, quilted leather seat!

“We run every hour, every day with handy stops in the heart of both Manchester and Leeds – so no long walk to and from the railway station. And there’s a warm welcome from our amazing team of drivers, dedicated to the route, who can use our very own ‘zap-nav’ to avoid congestion and select the quickest route.

“We’re giving anyone with a valid rail ticket between Leeds and Manchester – that includes single, return and season tickets – the chance to try Cityzap for free during the whole month of January, simply by showing their rail ticket or pass to our bus driver, any time and on any day until the end of this month.”

Cityzap offers amazing value for regular travellers. A Gold seven-day unlimited travel ticket on any of its buses is just £34 – compared with £76.60 for a week’s train travel between Leeds and Manchester Piccadilly, even before January’s rail fare rises come into effect. And Gold doesn’t just take you between the two cities – it’s also valid on all Transdev buses across dozens of other routes, covering a huge area of the North of England, all the way from the Yorkshire Coast to Preston in Lancashire.

Cityzap launched its Leeds to Manchester service in November 2017, following the huge success of operator Transdev’s award-winning original Cityzap express between Leeds and York, which carried a quarter of a million passengers in its first 12 months.

The Cityzap concept was created following extensive customer research across the UK and Europe by bus operator Transdev, which revealed that customer perceptions of bus travel suffered due to the perception that even though buses linked major cities, the number of stops served along the route made it difficult for the bus to effectively compete against the train and the private car.

Cityzap buses from Leeds to Manchester start at the City Bus Station, right next to Leeds Market and the recently-opened Victoria Gate shopping centre – and again, ideal for connections across Yorkshire, including Harrogate on the 36, and York on the original Cityzap express. Buses arriving from Manchester also drop off next to the Corn Exchange.

And in Manchester, Cityzap goes straight to the heart of the city, with convenient stops at Piccadilly Gardens, next to the Metrolink and bus station for easy connections and close to the Arndale Centre – and at Chorlton Street, next to the coach station and Canal Street.

Buying tickets for the Cityzap service is easy, with a dedicated smartphone app, Transdev Go, offering a range of bargain day, weekly and monthly tickets for travel on Cityzap and the full Transdev network of connecting services across the North of England.

The app also gives users access to real-time live departure times from the first stop on their journey to the last – and a live news feed to make sure everyone’s in the know before they go.

Full details of times and amazing value fares on Cityzap between Leeds and Manchester is available online at: http://www.cityzap.co.uk.