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Press release   •   Aug 28, 2020 09:59 BST

Bus operators will increase the frequency of services from this weekend to help people ‘go back to school’ next week.

Oxford Bus Company is increasing the frequency of buses across many of its City routes to match services to new levels of demand and continue to support social distancing measures. Many services will return to ‘normal levels,’ matching pre-COVID-19 timetables.

Service 2 between Oxford and Kidlington will increase to operate every 6-7 minutes, providing nine buses per hour on Monday to Friday. While service 3, which operates between Oxford and Rose Hill will increase to every ten minutes Monday to Saturday. Services between Blackbird Leys and the city centre will increase to operate every 5 minutes on Mondays to Saturdays.

Both Oxford Bus Company and Thames Travel have worked with Oxfordshire County Council to identify areas of expected high demand from school and college pupils. An additional six buses will be deployed to provide additional capacity for school pupils for the return to school, to make sure everyone who wants to use the bus can do so safely.

There are multiple changes across many services from Sunday and passengers are encouraged to check the Oxford Bus Company and Thames Travel websites for new timetables.

Oxford Bus Company and Thames Travel are maintaining reduced vehicle capacities to help maintain social distancing on-board all services. Customers are still asked to pay using contactless payments or purchase tickets from the apps available. Enhanced cleaning regimes on all vehicles are being maintained and carefully monitored, with a continued greater focus on high-touch areas.

Its ‘When2Travel’ website feature also remains available for passengers to plan their journeys and check how busy buses are. The digital tool uses unique predictive technology to help passengers see what seats are available on services.

Phil Southall, Oxford Bus Company and Thames Travel Managing Director, said: “We have made a lot of changes to our timetables to match supply to expected demand and help everyone get back to school and college. I would encourage people to visit our websites to check timetables to plan their travel ahead of the changes on Sunday.

“It is encouraging to be able to increase some of our services as we all continue to try and balance life continuing to return to some form of normality with the sensible restrictions of COVID-19.

“Our priorities throughout have been customer and colleague welfare, cleanliness, social distancing, and providing services that match demand. Customers can travel with confidence on our services and we are looking forward to helping people get back to schools and colleges across Oxfordshire.”

You can view the new timetables here:

Oxford Bus Company:

Thames Travel:

The Oxford Bus Company has kept the people of Oxford moving since 1881. Our services now span the width and breadth of Oxford and also take passengers to Heathrow and Gatwick Airports. In addition, our City Sightseeing Oxford hop-on, hop-off open topped bus company provides enjoyable tours of Oxford. And our sister companies, Thames Travel and Carousel Buses provide convenient travel services across South Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire respectively.