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February 27, 2019

90% of Metlink passengers surveyed satisfied with their current trip

The Public Transport Passenger Satisfaction Survey was undertaken for rail and bus services in November 2018, and compared with survey results gathered in May 2018, prior to the mid-2018 network changes.

The survey provides a valuable benchmark from which to evaluate the mid-2018 changes to bus operations, routes, timetables, fares and payment. It showed most public transport users surveyed continue to be satisfied with their current trip – 90%, compared with 91% in May, with only 5% expressing dissatisfaction.

Train passengers were the most positive in their perceptions of their trip are with 94% positive, an increase on the May 2018 result (92%).

Satisfaction remains largely steady and positive for all aspects of rail services and perceptions of the public transport network, comparing favourably with previous surveys.

Bus passengers' perceptions of their trip has dropped moderately with 88% assessing their trip as positive compared with 91% in May 2018.  There has been a significant decline in bus passengers’ perceptions of the public transport network and service aspects such as reliability, frequency and information. This decline is strongly influenced by low scores from Wellington city bus passengers.

Full survey results can be found on the Metlink website.

Survey results reflect the relatively smooth transition for customers to new fares and payment systems in mid-July.

Barbara Donaldson, Chair of Greater Wellington's Sustainable Transport Committee, said customer feedback contributes to the identification and prioritisation of the Metlink service improvements needed.

“While there is much more work to do with our bus services, we are pleased with some of the positive results in this survey," said Cr Donaldson.

Insights from the survey support other feedback received from customers which is already informing a programme of planned improvements, including:

  • Changes to timetables to improve bus service frequency, reliability and capacity
  • The addition and extension of some new routes
  • Improvements to the performance of the Real Time Information system
  • Improvements to customer information online, at stops and stations and on buses

"We continue to work hard to deliver further improvements to the network within the constraints of the current driver shortage so customers have a better experience across the region,” added Cr Donaldson.

The survey ratings validate findings from the customer experience investigation of Wellington city’s new bus network undertaken by Greater Wellington from October through to December 2018.

The methodology and key questions of the survey are set by the New Zealand Transport Authority to ensure results are comparable across regions and operators. Greater Wellington adds further questions to allow further analysis of customer needs and to identify opportunities for improvements to Metlink services.

3,109 public transport customers were surveyed in November. The previous survey took place in May 2018, using the same methodology and with a similar sample size (3,800).

The survey uses a 0-10 rating scale where 0 is very dissatisfied and 10 is very satisfied. A positive result is measured by the total responses in the 6-10 range (satisfied and very satisfied).