Travellers in Groningen and Drenthe are taking more trips by bus. High-Value Public Transport like the Qliner and Q-link in particular is growing in popularity.
By Matthijs van Houten / Translation by Traci White
According to figures from the Public Transportation Office of Groningen and Drenthe, passengers in the region are satisfied overall with the quality of bus travel in the north.
In 2017, passengers in Groningen and Drenthe made 26.5 journeys by bus on average. That translates into roughly 300 million kilometres travelled by bus, which is 8.2 percent higher than 2016. Journeys on High-Value Public Transport grew even more dramatically: 56 percent of all bus travel was on a Qliner of Q-link bus.
Last year was the first time that decreasing CO2emissions was a stated goal in the public transportation budget. Busses were meant to decrease emissions per kilometre by 2 percent, and the northern lines managed to bring those numbers down by 8.9 percent.
That decline is due in part to the introduction of ten electric busses between Zuidhorn and Groningen central station. Four Qliners from Arriva Touring (lines 304 and 314) are also part of a pilot project relying on renewable diesel fuel.
Travellers gave the city and local bus lines in Drenthe and Groningen a score of 7.7. The Qliner 304 and 314 lines earned the same score, which is above the national average of 7.6, according to the OV Client Barometer 2017.
The regional Public Transportation office made a 2.3-million-euro profit last year from 110 million euros in sales. The positive year end results are attributed to rising wages for passengers travelling by bus and a lower than expected cost index. The profits will be applied to further improving services in 2019.