Tuesday, 10 June 2008

A bus driver's communication skills!

We all know that the government wants everyone to give up their cars, so that they can all be herded onto buses!

Fine if there's a decent bus-service, but, as you'd expect in a third-rate city like Plymouth, we have a bus-service to match! (To be fair to the city, my complaint has nothing to do with Plymouth CityBus but First Devon & Cornwall who provide the various 'services' to the Plymstock and South Hams side of the city).

Yesterday we had the misfortune to go into town from where we live. In there wisdom, the bus company involved has completely revamped the route, so that it's now grossly inconvenient, late, and uses small buses which are very uncomfortable and feel every vibration!

Ok, I can put up with that, even the almost 1-hour late return trip, but not the rudeness of their staff. Because I'm not too au fait with the route, and it wasn't clear on the bus, I politely asked the driver if he could confirm whether the bus passed by Billacombe Tavern - he looked as if I had asked him the formula of petrol, and just looked blank! I then said does it go along the main road - a couple of grunts later I realised that it did, so we boarded it. Of course this really grumpy driver soon cheered up as he swapped over at the First depot near Plymstock. In fact he was quite happy to chat with the driver who took over, while we waited in the heat!

When I got back, thinking that First Devon & Cornwall wanted feedback, I emailed them to tell them about this - I gave every detail so they knew what I was on about. Of course, did I get a reply - you must be joking! I did suggest that to drive a bus you hardly need a PhD, so probably upset all the executives there, who didn't read my email, as they probably have an arrangement for all complaints to go straight to spam!

They ought to call the service LAST rather than FIRST!

To avoid any embarrassment, the bus in the shot above was not the one we took - ours are like gold-dust! (When I get round to adding it!)
PS Needless to say, I never heard back from them, despite a second email pointing them to this item on my blog. To be fair, though, I expect they're always extremely busy dealing with every other customer's complaints, from what I could hear as we waited hopefully for one of their buses to turn up!

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