The coach passengers who spend, spend, spend!

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The new coach bays in Western Service Yard next to Newton Abbot Market. They look like they will be well-used. ALAN PAYLING

For those who work in the coach trade, it’s the $64,000 question. Everyone who takes visitors to towns, cities and resorts throughout the UK knows their passengers will spend something when they’re visiting a destination. Even if they only buy a cup of tea or an ice cream, most passengers will put their hands in their pockets during their visit. Many strongly suspect that the average spend is a lot higher than the price of a cuppa. Who hasn’t seen happy passengers returning to their coach laden with shopping bags, delighted with their purchases?

If Napoleon was alive today, he probably wouldn’t say we were just a nation of shopkeepers: it would be more accurate for him to say that we are also a nation of shoppers, and shopaholics at that. Indeed, many operators have delighted their happy breeds with a bit of retail therapy, but how much do coach passengers actually spend? It’s an important question and one that could bring significant benefits for the coach trade. It’s one thing to know that passengers spend money, but when the industry is trying to persuade cash strapped local authorities that providing better, but expensive, facilities for coaches will bring financial benefits to their community, you are going to need some hard facts to win the argument.[…]

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