Megabus expands in France

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FRANCE Leading low-fares coach operator, has announced the opening of two new bases in France as it continues to expand its growing intercity coach network in the country. 15 new domestic journey options have been introduced and eight locations – Bordeaux, Poitiers, Rennes, Nantes, Le Mans, Tours, Angers and Chatellerault – have been added for the first time, bringing low-fares and good quality travel to many more travellers across France.

A €2.7m fleet of 10 new leased Scania single-deck coaches will operate the new services from a new operating base in Bordeaux and there will also be a new crew base in central Nantes, creating employment for more than 50 staff. The company now operates 27 vehicles in France and employs more than 125 staff. By the beginning of 2016, it expects to have 35 vehicles offering more than 50 journey options across the country.

New legislation agreed over the summer means that people in France can travel more freely by coach between cities in France. The new ‘Macron Law’ allows operators to offer domestic services on any routes that are over 100km, including journeys that are part of existing international routes. Under the law, less than 50% of seats can be sold for domestic travel on international journeys. Managing Director Edward Hodgson, said: “This is another exciting step in our expansion of domestic coach services in France. Our aim is to open up more affordable travel opportunities for people than they have ever had before and we believe our low-fares and good quality services can deliver that.

“We know from our experience in the UK that both coach and rail industries can thrive as part of a wider public transport network and we look forward to welcoming even more people in France on to our services in the near future.”

Fares on every journey start from just €1 plus a 50 cent booking fee. All services operate using vehicles with free WiFi, power sockets, air-conditioning and a toilet. previously announced the opening of a base in Belleville-sur-Saône, north of Lyon, with the creation of 75 jobs. The new operating base near Bordeaux is located in Floirac. 10 vehicles will be parked there under a partnership with local company Chalavan & Duc.