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2007-09-10 STG-001
Stagecoach Group

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Stagecoach extends megatrain.com budget rail network


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Stagecoach Group

Stagecoach extends megatrain.com budget rail network
_______________________________________________________________


date
10 Sep 2007
source Stagecoach Group
type Press release



o New destinations and extra discount seats on South West Trains network
o Expansion coincides with completion of Portsmouth engineering works
o Travel boost part of multi-million-pound package of franchise improvements
o Nearly 6,000 seats a week now booked through low-cost web service

Stagecoach Group is expanding its budget rail service megatrain.com to more stations on the South West Trains network, it was announced today (10 September 2007).

Fares from just £1* will now be available for travel to and from Axminster, Honiton and Havant, offering an additional 370 bargain seats a week.
Tickets for the new destinations will go on sale from Friday 14 September for travel from Monday 29 October 2007 to coincide with the completion of Network rail’s major engineering works in the Portsmouth area.
The extension of the megatrain.com network is part of Stagecoach’s multi-million-pound investment programme at South West Trains under the new 10-year franchise. The new South Western franchise will deliver a comprehensive package of train, station and security investment, further improved performance, increased capacity, state-of-the-art ticketing options and a range of other customer benefits.

A total of 16 stations on the South West Trains network will now provide megatrain.com fares as well as 18 stations on the Virgin CrossCountry network.

Ian Dobbs, Chief Executive of Stagecoach Group’s rail division, said: “megatrain.com is leading the way in offering high-quality excellent-value rail travel and we believe this flexible approach to pricing is the future for rail travel in the UK.

“We promised more ticketing options for customers as part of our innovative plans for the new South Western franchise and we are delighted the extension of the megatrain.com network will deliver cheaper rail travel to even more customers.”

Around 3,100 megatrain.com seats are booked each week on South West Trains services, as well as 2,800 on Virgin CrossCountry routes, and more than 250,000 passengers have used the service since it was launched in November 2005.

megabus.com, Stagecoach’s market-leading low-cost inter-city coach service, connects around 40 destinations across the UK and carries more than two million passengers a year.

Earlier this year, Stagecoach integrated the megabus.com and megatrain.com travel sites, allowing customers to access both coach and rail options in one easy search. The online retailing system now gives visitors access to a total of more than 500 daily departures to around 50 locations across the UK from just £1*.

As part of its new South Western rail franchise Stagecoach has pledged a range of improvements, including:

o The refurbishment of 14 major stations
o Better subways, lighting, waiting rooms, booking halls, toilets, shelters, seats and CCTV cameras on every mainland station and train.
o At least £20 million of car park investments
o Installing ticket barriers at 13 more stations
o Smartcard ticket technology, compatible with Oyster in the London area
o A significant increase in mainline and suburban peak capacity
o A promise to retain the presence of a guard on every service
o Installation of a further 160 self-service ticket vending machines to reduce ticket office queues

ENDS
For media enquiries only, please contact:

Steve Stewart, Director of Corporate Communications
Stagecoach Group
Tel: 01738 442111 (office) or 07764 774680 (mobile)
email: steven.stewart@stagecoachgroup.com

South West Trains’ Press Office
Tel: 020 7620 5229

NOTES TO EDITORS
Stagecoach Group is a leading international public transport group, with extensive operations in the UK, United States and Canada. The company employs around 27,000 people, and operates bus, coach, rail, and tram services.
South West Trains stations currently served by the megatrain.com network are: London Waterloo, Portsmouth & Southsea, Portsmouth Harbour, Southampton Central, Bournemouth, Weymouth, Salisbury, Yeovil Junction, Exeter Central, Exeter St Davids, Bath Spa,and Bristol Temple Meads. Poole was added as a megatrain.com destination in March 2007.
megatrain.com fares are available at the following stations on the Virgin CrossCountry network: Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dunbar, Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Alnmouth, Morpeth, Carlisle, Oxenholme, Manchester, Birmingham, Southampton, Bournemouth, Bristol, Exeter, Plymouth, St Austell, Truro and Penzance.
megatrain.com services form part of existing off-peak services operated by South West Trains. To book or for further information go to www.megatrain.com or www.megabus.com.
Bookings are also accepted by phone on 09001 200 300. Lines are open 8am to 9pm & days a week. Calls cost 60p a minute from landlines. Mobile calls may vary.
For customer services enquiries, please call 0901 331 0031. Calls cost 10p a minute from landlines. Mobile calls may vary.
*All megatrain.com and megabus.com reservations are subject to a 50p booking fee.


Railhub Archive ::: 2007-09-10 STG-001





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