Second Platinum service for Aberdeen…
First has introduced another Platinum premium service in Aberdeen. The operator has invested £250,000 in its Service 12, which operates every ten minutes between Torry and Heathryfold via the city centre, to upgrade it. The development will make it one of the first services in the area to feature audio visual next stop announcements. Ten single deckers on the route are being completely refurbished with new Platinum branding, leather seats, wi-fi and new interior vinyls with service information and places of interest on the route. Its drivers will receive enhanced customer service training. The company will introduce a no quibble guarantee enabling customers to claim a free journey should they be unhappy with any aspect of the service.
Introducing the new Platinum service comes six months after First Aberdeen unveiled its first one on Service 19, which connects the city centre with Culter and Tillydrone. Since that route was upgraded, the company has reported a rise in customer satisfaction and a 5% increase in passenger numbers. Over 1,500 extra customers a week are using the service compared to 2013.
MD of First Aberdeen, Duncan Cameron, said, ‘Over the last two years at First Aberdeen the entire team has been working hard to improve our services and attract more customers on board. Platinum is the most high profile, ambitious initiative that we’ve introduced and our most successful. Transforming another of our services into Platinum was an easy decision and I hope that customers using Service 12 will welcome the improvements. Going forward we will continue to invest in all our services and make bus travel better. Customers can look forward to further improvements over the next six months.’
…where more hydrogen buses arrive
Two more Van Hool zero-emission hydrogen buses have arrived in Aberdeen for use on the ‘Aberdeen Hydrogen Bus Project’. The vehicles have been delivered to Stagecoach’s Tullos depot in the south of the city. They bring the total delivered so far to six, with the remaining four of Europe’s largest hydrogen bus fleet due to arrive in the coming months. Four of the vehicles will be operated by First Aberdeen and six by Stagecoach on city routes. The Project is testing the economic and environmental benefits of hydrogen transport technologies and aims to drive their development. It has been co-funded by Scottish, UK and European partners: the UK’s innovation agency, Technology Strategy Board (£2.4m); Scottish Government (£1.7m); Scottish Enterprise (£1.7m); European Union Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH JU) through the High V.LO-City and HyTransit projects (£8.3m). The vehicles will be refuelled at Scotland’s first large hydrogen refuelling station, at the council’s Kittybrewster depot. Further refuelling stations are proposed across the city as the Aberdeen Hydrogen Bus Project evolves.