“I’ll be saving R800 per month by using the bus service from now on.”
“I started early, in the dark, to walk over the bridge to catch a bus. Now I can catch the bus one block from my home!”
“I bought Smart Cards for my children – they don’t have to walk to school in Borcherds anymore!”
“It’s so nice to be transported right into Thembalethu after a day’s hard work…”
These were the comments from passengers who travelled between Thembalethu and Blanco on Monday after GO GEORGE rolled out the first route to this community on Sunday. A total of 1954 passengers boarded buses on Route 18A on this first weekday.
Residents in Thembalethu queued with great anticipation to try out the new route. According to Morné Lakay, Acting Manager of GO GEORGE, it is becoming clear that a huge percentage of the passengers have already been bus users who previously joined the network of routes by either travelling into town by minibus taxi or walking over the N2 bridge to catch a bus in Parkdene.
“Usually, replacing an informal method of public transport with a more formal, scheduled public transport system has its own unique challenges in every community, but many Thembalethu people know the ropes and can even advise or guide their friends and neighbours to use the bus service,” he said.
“Of course, our communication champions are available and ready to help at the Smart Card kiosk and at the bus stops to support the first-timers. New passengers who feel uncertain are most welcome to ask for support on a first trip by phoning our Call Centre and making arrangements,” he added.
More information regarding the use of the system and trip planning can be obtained by phoning the Call Centre toll-free on 0800 044 044, sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or visiting this website or the GO GEORGE Facebook page.