STAGECOACH said more people got on board its buses this summer as the transport giant posted a four per cent rise in revenues from regional services.
The company, which runs buses and trams across Yorkshire, reported a 0.9 per cent rise in bus passenger volumes outside London in the 12 weeks to July 20.
Across the group, Stagecoach described overall trading as satisfactory after revenues from UK rail operations including South West Trains and East Midlands Trains rose 4.9 per cent.
Its North America division posted the same rate of growth amid the continued expansion of its megabus.com service.
Around 2.8 million passenger journeys are made on Stagecoach buses each day.
The group has major city bus operations in Hull and Sheffield and it also operates the Supertram light rail network in Sheffield.
Its low-cost coach service, megabus.com, operates a network of inter-city services across the UK and continental Europe. It recently placed orders worth more than £90m on new greener buses for 2014/15, with the company saying it was confident that it would continue to get people out of their cars and back on board buses.
Stagecoach said revenues earned directly from fare-paying passengers contributed most to the bus division’s four per cent growth rate, with concessionary, contract, tendered and school revenues also continuing to grow despite efforts by local authorities to minimise concessionary reimbursements.
Stagecoach’s other UK operations include the rail networks South West Trains, Island Line and East Midlands Trains.
It has a 49 per cent shareholding in Virgin Rail, which runs the West Coast franchise.
In North America, Stagecoach operates around 2,400 buses and coaches. Stagecoach recently failed to secure the new Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern rail franchise, but this was offset by the award of a new West Coast franchise until 2017.
Stagecoach said: “Although there are a number of challenges to growing profit in the year ending April 30 2015, overall current trading is satisfactory and we remain on course to meet our expectations for the year.”