Wellingtonians highly satisfied with public transport
Customer satisfaction with the Wellington public transport network remains high, according to the Regional Council's latest annual Metlink customer satisfaction survey.
The survey, carried out in April and May this year and completed by almost 4,500 public transport customers, found that 83% of people are satisfied with Metlink bus, train and harbour ferry services, 86% would recommend Wellington's public transport services to a friend, and 90% find it easy to get to public transport.
Paul Kos, the Regional Council's Manager, Public Transport Planning, says the overall response from customers was very positive again this year. "It's good to see that overall satisfaction is still high. Wellingtonians are clearly satisfied with their public transport."
Ninety percent of people find it easy to drive or walk to their nearest railway station, bus stop or harbour ferry wharf and 79% of people rate their stations, stops and wharves as clean and well-maintained. "Eighty-five percent of people feel safe waiting at the station, bus stop or wharf and 83% say information about Metlink routes and timetables is easy to find.
"The survey results show a decline in some areas but we're working on these. For example it's clear that people want more information around delays and disruptions. Upgrades to Real Time Information are in progress and we're working with operators to increase the accuracy of Real Time Information."
Mr Kos says that since the survey was done a Real Time app and widget had been released. These enable people to get up to the minute information on their smart phones about when their bus or train will arrive. Also, a new Metlink website will be launched soon where people will be able to get customised information about their particular services and routes and improvements are being made to information flows through popular social media channels such as Twitter.
"There have also been some recent rail improvements which will make a difference. More new Matangi trains have begun arriving, which will help meet demand. We've now got more powerful and faster locomotives hauling Wairarapa carriages, and thanks to more funding from the NZ Transport Agency, we've been able to complete some rail work sooner than scheduled. This work required speed restrictions on the Hutt Valley and Wairarapa line which were making trains late.
"Our big focus is now on buses. We're exploring options for high capacity buses in Wellington City, we've designed a new bus network to make services faster and more convenient and we're developing new performance-based contracts for all our bus, train and harbour ferry services which will encourage operators to provide top quality, reliable services."
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The annual customer satisfaction survey is a requirement of the NZ Transport Agency, the Regional Council's public transport co-funding partner.
The key questions and methodology are set by the Transport Agency to ensure results are comparable across regions and operators.
Gravitas Research and Strategy Limited were commissioned to develop and conduct the survey. Surveying took place between 21 April and 10 May 2015.
Almost 4500 public transport users were surveyed on 209 trips on trains, buses and harbour ferries.
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