“After a long school holiday break, and with some children preparing to catch a bus to school for the first time, a reminder of some useful bus travel tips is sure to come in handy,” said Bren Burkevics, Acting Director, ACTION.
“Before school returns each year, school bus services are reviewed and, if required, adjustments are made to cater to changes in enrolment patterns and the development of new suburbs. Please double check the school bus timetable on the ACTION website, as not all routes or times will be the same as last year.
“Make sure you familiarise yourself and your child with the bus route and identify the stops closest to your house. Children must signal the driver as the bus will not automatically service each stop it travels past.
“A bus fare increase comes into effect on Monday 4 February 2013 which will see school student cash fares increase from $2.00 to $2.10, and MyWay fares increase from $0.95 to $1.00. The new fare will automatically be deducted from the card.
“I encourage parents to check their child’s card balance and top up if required. MyWay cards can be topped up online, over the phone via the ACTION Bus Information Line (13 17 10), or in person at the Belconnen and City MyWay Centres, Canberra Connect Shopfronts and MyWay recharge agents. If your child does not have a MyWay card they can also be purchased online or at these locations.”
Mr Burkevics said that safety is a top priority and there are rules for outside and inside the bus that are very important to keep in mind to ensure the safety of all passengers.
“When waiting for your bus to arrive make sure you stand back from the kerb. Once it stops enter the bus in a single file. If a seat is free please sit down and stow your bag underneath the seat, well clear of the aisle. If there are no seats available, and you have to stand in the aisle, move to the back to leave room for those who get on after you.
“The bus should also be exited in a single file and, once off the bus, do not cross the road until it has gone.”
Mr Burkevics said that while school bus services are available to school students only, parents with young children may apply to travel on these services for a few weeks to help their child get used to bus travel.