23 Mar 2017  22:08

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Why Take the Bus?

Using the bus could be cheaper and more convenient than you think and it helps the environment and reduces congestion:


  • Over 60% of householders in Dunstable, Houghton Regis and Leighton Buzzard using public transport said it was because it helped save money (Household Survey 2012)


  • In 2010/11 80% of households in Central Bedfordshire were within 30 minutes of a town centre by bus and 94% within 30 minutes of a supermarket.

Environmentally friendly and reduces congestion

  • 5% of CO2 is produced by bus compared to 60% from passenger car trips of the UK road transport sector
  • Switching just one car journey in 25, or a month to bus or coach can remove one billion car journeys from our roads (and result in a reduction of 2m tonnes of CO2).
  • The average number of people in a coach is 32 compared to 1.58 in a car.
  • In 2008, 60% of car journeys had just one person in them. [National Travel Survey 2008]

Bus Services

Bus services in Central Bedfordshire operate between and within main urban areas and key service centres, connecting through to places such as Bedford, Luton, Milton Keynes, Aylesbury and St Albans.

Commercially operated services tend to focus on the inter-urban network. More rural areas are predominantly served by bus services supported by the local authority.

Bus Operators

The main operators are Stagecoach, Arriva, Centrebus and Grant Palmer who work closely with Central Bedfordshire to deliver services both on the commercial and supported networks.

Stagecoach East - 01604 662266
Arriva- the Shires & Essex - 0844 800 4411
Centrebus - 0844 357 6520
Grant Palmer - 01525 719719

Tickets & Fares

Operators have a range of ticket and fare options.

Details of Arriva ticketing options can be seen on their website.

Details of Centrebus ticketing options can be seen on their website

Hip-hop is the multi operator ticket that is issued and accepted on all services operated by Centrebus and Arriva, within the Luton, Dunstable, Downside & Houghton Regis Zone. For the busway, Hip-hop tickets are also valid on the Grant Palmer C service.

Students and schoolchildren are often able to benefit from further discounts. You can view our student travel factsheet here.

Plus Bus

Plus Bus tickets enable you to buy your train and bus travel in one easy transaction when you are buying your train ticket at the station by phone or online.

For more information visit www.plusbus.info

Town and Area Maps

To help you plan your bus journey within Central Bedfordshire there are a series of maps available.

For an overview of the whole of Bedfordshire you will need the County Bus Routes Map.

For individual towns and routes there are also maps for:

Ampthill and Flitwick
Leighton Buzzard

All these maps are available to view or download on the More tab under Resources and Downloads.

Bus Pass

Concessionary fares – general information

The National Concessionary Travel Scheme allows those who are eligible, to travel on local buses free of charge anywhere in England (but not in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland).

The national concession applies at off-peak times on Mondays to Fridays and all day Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays. There is no charge for issuing a National Concessionary Travel Pass.

In addition to the national concession, eligible Central Bedfordshire residents can travel free all day every day on local buses within and from Central Bedfordshire. There may be restrictions on travel from outside Central Bedfordshire in the peak period.

A useful guide can be downloaded here.

How to apply

You can download and complete the national concessionary travel scheme application avaliable here.

Companion Passes are available subject to GP certification.

Completed applications can be returned to Central Bedfordshire Council, Priory House, Monks Walk, Chicksands Shefford. SG17 5TQ.

People with mobility issues or other disabilities may wish to view our disability bus travel factsheet (produced in association with the Disability Resource Centre in Poynters Road) here.

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