Friday, 22 December 2017

Christmas Eve Buses 2017

Amended service levels start on Sunday, which is Christmas Eve. Here's a summary of what's running, complete with the times of the last buses on those operators that are finishing early....

See details of all festive services across the region here.

Bluestar, Damory, More, Salisbury Reds, Stagecoach Winchester, Xelabus: Normal Sunday service
First Portsmouth: Sunday service with early finish.
First Southampton: Sunday service with early finish.
Stagecoach Andover: Normal Sunday service with last buses by 20.50 on Activ8
Stagecoach Portsmouth: Normal Sunday service with last buses by 21.25 on route 23.
Unilink: Vacation Sunday service with early finish.
Yellow: Sunday service with early finish.

Early finish times:

Bluestar are providing a full Sunday service with no early finish.

More are running a full Sunday service with no early finish.

The 2050 Activ8 from Andover will terminate at Tidworth and the 2205 from Salisbury will not run, but all other journeys will run in full.

Salisbury Reds are running a full Sunday service with no early finish.


  1. Go South Coast have won back the Unilink contract for another 10 years

  2. I'm not quite sure why we have this sudden craze of last buses on Christmas Eve being before 6pm in some cases. 8 or 9pm has been typical in previous years but nothing like this.

    1. My theory is one of two things.

      1) Due to Christmas Eve being on a Sunday which has a lower level of service, therefore also earlier finish than when Christmas Eve falls on a weekday.

      2) First are struggling therefore they are trying to spend less money and finishing earlier.

    2. More money for Bluestar.I`m sure Go-Ahead shareholders will raise a glass to that.

    3. You are joking. The shops close at 4/5pm. Buses will be dead after 6/7 pm. Everyone else (First, Stagecoach, RATP, Arriva is wrong and Go Ahead are right, I suppose.

      As for Go Ahead shareholders, the shares are down no less than 32% in the last year, so they desperately need something to celebrate, but running empty buses on Christmas Eve night won't be it!

      By the way, in the same period First shares are up in value!

    4. Actually, the majority of RATP services start finishing up around 6 with the exception of the B1 which I believe is contracted to Bournemouth Airport?

    5. Far from buses being dead on Xmas Eve, they are usually very busy. Blue star know exactly what they are doing, while First abandon their customers completely.
      As for share prices, I don't think it has much to do with a few local buses, in what are national empires! More to do with rail franchises at the moment.
      Happy Christmas to First bus Southampton. I doubt that you will be here to celebrate the following one.....

  3. I don't know where you get the idea that buses are busy in the late evening on Xmas Eve; as an experienced driver who volunteers to work over Xmas (non-Christian, so Xmas means nowt to me), trade tails off soon after the shops close. As Xmas Eve is a Sunday this year, I would not expect to be carrying many folk after about 6pm, save for a few hardy souls when the pubs turn out. I don't work for First, but they have got this one nearly right (probably reasonable to keep services on until 7 or 8 but waste of time after that).

    I agree Southampton is a local skirmish but it is not JUST about rail; the OP makes the point that GA share price has dropped like a stone, and doubts about the profitability of its bus operations are clearly a factor in that. Be it the North East, East Anglia, Plymouth or Oxford, GA bus operations are not delivering for the shareholder. GSC may be making good money, none of us on here know, but carting fresh air around on Xmas Eve in Southampton won't make them any money (I accept Unilink may possibly be slightly different though I have no evidence either way).

    The OP makes the point that almost all operators outside the Mets finish early. Why are GSC right and everyone else wrong? Ans: They ain't!

    1. There is a strong tendency in the bus industry to operate or not operate on certain days or times purely because that is the way it has always been done and to make assumptions that no one will want to travel at certain times without a shred of actual evidence. Go South Coast now operate higher levels of service than most operators around various public holidays as well as generally operating a high level of evening and Sunday services compared to others and seem to find it all worthwhile.

      From my own experience late buses on Christmas Eve while not being really busy are certainly not carrying fresh air around either.

      Whether the problem with Go Ahead shareprice is due to rail or other bus companys it is certainly not due to Go South Coast who perform well and whose accounts showing this are freely in the public domain.

    2. What about New Years Eve?Busiest night of the year for people heading out to town,yet NO Firstbuses after 6pm!Bluestar raking it in then for sure.

    3. This page is not about New Year's Eve!! Nice attempt to change the subject having lost the argument.