Oxford Bus Company invests in Airline fleet and ups frequency

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Three of the new coaches have entered service already, with the rest of the order due later this month. JACK COOPER

An additional 4,536 seats are being provided between Oxford and Heathrow Airport weekly to meet growing demand, with the service ramped up to a 20 minute frequency

Oxford Bus Company has invested £2m in a new fleet of coaches for its flagship Airline route, and will increase the frequency of its services to Heathrow Airport to every 20 minutes as demand grows. An additional 12 departures have been operating daily since 28 May, providing over 4,000 more seats every week. Frequency has been upgraded from every 30 minutes to every 20 at the same time.

To cope with the increased demand, the fleet of coaches is being increased by two, with seven new Mercedes Tourismos replacing five of the existing fleet. The additional coaches take the overall fleet to 18 vehicles. Services between Oxford, High Wycombe and Gatwick Airport will remain the same.

Oxford Bus Company Managing Director Luke Marion said: “It’s fantastic to see the levels of international travel fully return, which has resulted in increased demand for our airline services. Our Airline services provide crucial connectivity between Oxford, High Wycombe and Heathrow Airport and Gatwick Airport. The latest investment in our fleet and increasing our services further underpins our commitment to the service and providing our passengers with a first-class service.”

The new Euro VI coaches are fitted with seat-back tables to accommodate laptops and tablets, plus USB charging points, air-conditioning and free WiFi. They are wheelchair accessible, and fitted with toilets plus offer extensive luggage capacity for passengers’ suitcases and bags. There are also monitors on board with sat-nav displays to enable passengers to check progress on their journey.

Heathrow’s Surface Access Route Development Lead Matthew Wooll said: “Travelling more sustainably to Heathrow is very important, and our partnership with Oxford Bus Company is delivering some great improvements to the bus and coach network. We want to see many more passengers and colleagues choosing to use public transport to the airport, which takes cars off the road and reduces emissions and congestion, in line with our sustainability goals.”

Look out for more details on the new Mercedes-Benz Tourismos for the Airline fleet in a future issue of CBW.