by noizyboy on June 11, 2009

stop! stop! Hey, Mr Bus Driver, that person running down the footpath, waving at you, just ten metres or so from the bus stop? They probably want to get on the bus.

And the guy who’s just got on and tells you to "wait, there’s someone just coming" – he’s probably wanting you to wait, ‘cos there’s someone coming.

I understand you’re the ‘Express’ – but, really, no-one is going to be put out if you wait an extra 5 seconds to let a straggler catch up (especially if you spend a minute haranguing a passenger for daring to try and pay their fare with a $20 note.)

velcrodots June 14, 2009 at 2:13 pm

I’ve had both extremes of bus drivers within a week. One day, I had one that took it as his duty to be a sort of a tour guide, pointing out lovley parts of our city we were driving through. He then cherrily wished us all a good day of learning as most of us exited to go to Uni. Every single person thanked this guy at the same time, it was great. On the other hand, I also had this grumpy old man who flew past this bus stop even though people were waiting there, one even madly flailing her arms around like an electrocuted octopus.

George D June 15, 2009 at 12:24 am

The point is – complain. Complain early, complain often,

Get the rego numbers of these sadistic men and women who give public transport a bad name. This however is in part due to the ridiculous timetables they have, which means they have to drive with intent-to-kill to make it on time.

Complain about the $20’s (which is due to the company limiting the change they have).

Both of these are company problems. They’re contracted to the council, and the council has the ability to kick them into shape.

Anonymous June 15, 2009 at 9:54 am

It also helps to complain to the city council rather than directly to the bus company. The company has to answer to the city council about all complaints received. (At least this was the case when I worked for Stagecoach.)

Ensure you have the following:

  • Date and Time
  • Location
  • And as much of the following as posible
  • Route Number and Destination
  • Bus number, and/or Rego Number
  • Driver Number/Name if possible. They have both shift and staff numbers.

Get the reference number for the complaint and follow it up!

Anon June 15, 2009 at 9:14 pm

I got on the bus the other day with a $20 note, being the only cash I had. I usually use plastic but keep a $20 spare for “emergencies”.

I got a glared at, was very loudly told that “we’re not a bank you know” and after much tsk-tsking, sighing and head-shaking finally got my ticket and slunk, red-faced, to the least conspicuous seat.

Patronising and self-important bus drivers are partly why I’d given up on public transport and car-pool to work.

Well, that and the fact that the bus timetable isn’t so much a timetable as a series of broken promises…

gruffalo June 15, 2009 at 10:11 am

It would be more effective to complain to Greater Wellington Regional Council, as they contract out the bus services, not the City Council.

Anon October 3, 2009 at 12:38 pm

And to follow that up…last week I took my parents on a bus ride home after they dropped their hire car off.

I now carry a bag of $1 and $2 coins (to avoid the embarrassment mentioned above) and I filled the bus driver’s little tray until his cup runneth over with what I hoped was the correct change. He heaved a great sigh and just started shoving it in his coin tray. I said “let me know if I haven’t got it right”.

The response? A very surly “Well I’m going to have to trust you. I’m not counting all that.”

I believe the lesson is that you just can’t win.

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