NOTE: Mot 1, Mot 3, Wakefield and Waimea to Nayland extension users, please take note of an important notice below the timetable. Price structuring for these routes will change from 24 April.
NOTICE FROM NELSON COACHLINES (SBL) 9 FEBRUARY 2023
To: Schools, Parents, Caregivers and Students
Re: Reviewed Pricing Structure for Commercial School Services after receiving feedback
Nelson Coachlines has operated these services for a number of years and it has been a challenge to maintain the sustainability of the services on a commercial basis.
The privately operated services were put in place to assist students who wanted an alternative option to be able to select which school they wish to go to, for various reasons. They accepted that they are out of the Ministry of Education transport eligibility zone and there would be a cost to travel to and from school by bus.
These Commercial services operate without Ministry of Education, Govt or Councils financial support and are required to be financially self-supporting. They are not part of the Public Transport system nor available to the general public.
The business has recently operated these services through the covid 19 period at cost to itself and kept costs down as much as possible. Now we find ourselves in inflationary times with no alternative but to review fare structure and pass on reasonable cost increases.
Parents/students have choices and could (subject to meeting MOE school transport criteria) use free transport to their closest school. Most of those on the bus would qualify.
Parents whose students are using the service want the most cost-efficient method of transport to and from school. In recent times we have seen various methods used from self-driving by students with friends, one way travel, casual travel and car-pooling. The biggest impact has been the one way and casual travel.
Hence the services are now been designed to cater better for regular daily return student travellers.
We have reviewed whether to continue the service as well as different fare structure/charging methods such as weekly, monthly or school term but however have decided that these are not fair options as sickness, exam time, teachers only days etc would disadvantage those students.
In the last two weeks we have reviewed and in turn amended the charges to allow for flexibility of travel.
As from 13 February 2023, there will be an interim fare increase on existing fare structure, that is one-way fares.
We will continue to offer one way travel but increase individual fares and introduce the daily return fare option from the beginning of school term 2, 24 April 2023.Daily return fares will be set lower than the sum of the individual fares, benefiting regular daily return passengers.
New fares as per below table:
Considerable time has been spent reviewing this and the decision has not been made lightly. This is the best outcome for the majority of students using this service.
Thank you for your continuing support.
SBL Group – Nelson Coachlines