an assessment has been made of the comparative performance of minibus, dial-a-bus and conventional bus services when operated at their optimal fare and frequency and in the absence of competing stage carriage services. this was effected using previously developed computer models. the three types of service were assessed individually over the same off-peak operating hours at frequencies from two to six buses an hour and the performances of the service at their profit maximising and net benefit maximising fares were examined. it was concluded that, when operated at the same frequency all three services were equally attractive to passengers. the dial-a-bus service was, however, found to be less efficient and more expensive to operate. none of the services could be operated at a net profit, although the conventional bus approximately covered its costs at a frequency of two buses an hour whilst generating a positive net social benefit. comparison with an earlier study, where all services were constrained to operate at the same fare and in the presence of competing stage carriage services showed that the relative performance and efficiency of the optimal services were unchanged; the optimal services however, performed better from both financial and social points of view than those to which the constraints applied.(a)

Want to know more about this project?