A global survey conducted by Volvo Buses reveals that demand for coach journeys is on the rise.
Among the markets surveyed, passengers in Latin America and southern Europe show most interest to travel by coach again, whereas people in northern Europe are slightly more hesitant. In total 65 % of the respondent’s state that they are planning for a coach journey within a year.
“This survey confirms the picture we get from our dialogue with coach operators across the globe. People want to travel by coach again, the demand is rising, and our estimate is that it will reach normal levels in about a year. We are happy that people still like to explore new destinations and reconnect through coach journeys,” says Karl Johansson, Business Development at Volvo Buses.
Volvo Buses has conducted a coach survey including 9,000 passengers in nine countries across the globe in order to gain valuable insights and share them with the coach community. Knowledge about passengers’ preferences is a business advantage for every coach owner and operator. What upsets coach passengers? What makes them happy and what are their demands? That is what the survey is all about.
Younger generations willing to pay for wi-fi
This is the second insights report from Volvo Buses; the first was made in 2018. This year the survey shows that there’s an increased interest in getting more information about the coach before booking tickets, and that coach travellers would like to make individual choices. Passengers are more willing to pay extra for add-on services. Also, to be online and always have access to wi-fi onboard the coach is clearly in high demand. It’s the younger generations that are most willing to pay extra and demand constant online connection. Regardless of country of origin, 75 % of passengers between 18 and 29 years reply that they are willing to pay extra for add-on services and 90 % of them express a need for wi-fi.
New safety behaviour after the pandemic
Another trend is that safety is an increasingly important factor. Coach passengers want more information about the safety features of the coach before booking tickets, but they also express concerns about feeling safe while onboard the coach.
“A high level of safety in the vehicle has always been important, but now safety is also about air filters and access to hand sanitizer. We see this change in priorities as a result of the pandemic,” says Karl Johansson at Volvo Buses. “Happily, the use of seat belts has increased. Now 72 % of passengers answer that they are strapped in while on a coach trip That is an increase from 66 % last time, but nevertheless, it’s not enough and especially in southern Europe we would like to see the number of seat belt users go up.”