Lothian launches seasonal bus service for visiting cruise passengers

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A 2018 Wright Eclipse Gemini-bodied Volvo B5TL is seen operating on the new Cruiselink service, using the X99 route number. RICHARD WALTER

Lothian is launching a new, direct bus link for cruise passengers visiting Edinburgh.

Called Cruiselink with the route number X99, the new service started this May and will run until September to help visitors get to the City Centre from Queensferry.

As the popularity of cruises to Edinburgh continues to grow, the Forth Estuary is expected to see a record number of cruise liners arriving during the 2018 season, bringing over 170,000 holidaymakers to Scotland’s Capital.

Buses will depart regularly on cruise arrival days, taking customers to and from their ships with a journey time of around 45 minutes.

Fares are priced at £4 for an adult single and £6 for an adult day return, with children’s tickets at half the price.

An adult day return can be combined with one Edinburgh Bus Tours city tours for £20, or £10 for a child.

Lothian Buses Business Development Manager, Keith Finlay, said: “Lothian recognises that there has been a considerable increase in visiting cruise ships to the region in recent years.

“The number arriving in Queensferry this summer is significant and we are confident that we can attract independent travellers and crew to use our new X99 bus service, ‘Cruiselink.’

“Service X99 will meet all summer arrivals at Hawes Pier, with departures every 20 minutes to and from Edinburgh St Andrew Square. Buses will run direct with a journey time of around 45 minutes.

“In addition to Cruiselink Single and Return tickets, our Network Day Ticket will also be valid on service X99, giving customers complete flexibility on how best to spend their day in Edinburgh and the Lothians.”

Cllr Helen Law, Chair of the CruiseForth Project, said: “The development of a new bus service for independent cruise passengers, and the crew, arriving at Queensferry – with frequent, professionally managed, fully accessible buses – will be very popular with cruise passengers.

“Improving the transport experience for cruise arrivals is one of the objectives of our cruise project, and we are pleased to see this new service being launched by Lothian Buses.”