On Demand public transport finding fans during Bega Valley trial

The wheelchair and pram accessible vehicles have been providing a convenient service since August last year.
The wheelchair and pram accessible vehicles have been providing a convenient service since August last year.

On Demand buses have been operating in Bega, Merimbula and Eden since August 19 as an initiative of Transport NSW to trial the service.

The service has carried over 1000 passengers per month across the three areas, picking passengers up at their homes and dropping them at their desired destination, for the price of a regular bus fare.

Eden resident Danielle Rout is one passenger who has used the On Demand service to travel to the shops and to take her daughter to and from preschool.

"It's been a great experience for my family, the bus comes right to my front door to pick us up and is always on time - when I moved to the area I was shocked to find out there is no such thing as Uber here, so finding out about this service has saved me in various ways," Ms Rout said.

"After the Christmas break they began using larger buses which are wheelchair and pram accessible, this has made the service exceptional and easy to use for my family."

Bega resident James Aulbury and his partner use the On Demand bus service 4-5 times per week to take them to the shops and TAFE in Bega.

"The drivers are friendly and communication is great, everyone is kind towards my partner and I, it's affordable and convenient."

A one-way trip starts from $2.30 and half price fares are available for concession card holders.

The trial will conclude at the end of July this year. A contract for the continuation of this service will depend on the success and growth of the trial.

Ian McManus of Sapphire Coast Buslines has been managing the trial and is very positive about the contribution the service has made to the community thus far.

"We are regularly contacted by customers about how this service has improved their quality of life, allowing them greater freedom to move about during the day."