Sunday 22 June 2014

Council check: Surrey County Council

This week, we take a look at how well Surrey County Council promotes the bus services on its patch.

Where do the buses go?

Maps exist , but it isn't immediately obvious where to find them. You need to go to the timetables section and then look to the 'See also..." box on the right and click on maps. The maps are clear and cover the entire county, plus there are town enlargements. 5 out of 5.


These are all available and easy to find, ordered by area. 5 out of 5.


Nothing about single tickets, although links are provided to the bus operators' websites. They don't tell you about single fares either, but at least they give you a point of contact to call or e-mail. There is a multi-operator ticket for Woking. In this part of the world, most operators sell Explorer tickets, which are usually valid on other operators too, but not always. It depends on who issued your ticket and with which other operators you wish to travel. It's very confusing but Surrey has attempted to give an overview of who accepts whose Explorer tickets. Plusbus tickets are well described. They have tried, but the Explorer mess drags Surrey's score in this category down to 2 out of 5.


Maps cover the whole of the county. Timetables are complete and easy to find. Fares information is confusing. It's good that there's a multi-operator ticket for Woking, but the different overlapping Explorer tickets on offer are surely begging for the council to intervene and establish one uniform product so that passengers and bus drivers have some clarity. Surrey County Council scores a total of 12 out of 15.


  1. In the notes on the page for ordering them it states that the timetables books can only be ordered if you live within Surrey.
    They will not post them 'out of county'.
    Living next door in Kent this is 'unhelpful'!
    Why they have to have such a policy I don't know but can guess!!
    When I have to go anywhere near Guildford I stop off to visit the enquiry office in the bus station which is helpful and usually well stocked with both operators and SCC material - but this facility may be funded by SCC?
    But why do I have to go into Surrey to get SCC books?

  2. Dear Mr Bugle, there ARE maps that cover the whole county! On the timetables page that you linked to there is a section called "See Also" which includes a link to "Maps of bus routes and stops". That page then list separate countywide bus and train maps, as well as all the town maps, plus boarding maps for larger towns. Please could you update your review appropriately?

  3. Thanks Anon @ 1658! You're clearly more eagle eyed than I was when I originally wrote this post. Surrey has now been bumped up to 12 points.

  4. The Explorer is pretty much dead and replaced by Discovery which despite being available for a month Arriva only just started issuing, accepting and advertising. The Woking Travelwide "should" be accepted on ALL operators in Woking according to Surrey BUT the 48 from Woking tries to refuse it, the once a week Stagecoach doesn't like it and Abellio school services (run as normal services) don't seem to take it. Also the monthly ticket for some bizarre reason is only sold in Guildford Bus Station which is not in the Woking travelwide area!!! A return anywhere on Arriva in Woking is almost always the price of a day ticket at £4.70 even if its only Woking to Kingfield for example!


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