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Praise for bus/rail ticket plan to ease airport waits.

Byline: By RHODRI CLARK Western Mail

Fears that the rail link to Cardiff Airport will be too infrequent when it starts next year could be overcome by an integrated transport ticket. Arriva Trains Wales and Cardiff Bus are considering a tie-up where train tickets would be valid on the new Airport Xpress bus service, and bus tickets would be valid on the train.

The companies also aim to co-ordinate their timetables so there will be a public transport service between the airport and city centre every 20 minutes during daytime.

Earlier this year transport experts claimed the planned hourly train service would be too infrequent to attract many air passengers to the train as an alternative to the private car.

But the choice of train or bus could be attractive, especially for people who have just landed at the airport and do not wish to wait up to an hour for the next train.

Although details have yet to be finalised, the plan has already been given the official seal of approval.

Transport minister Andrew Davies said, 'This is an excellent example of an effective partnership approach between Cardiff Bus and Arriva Trains Wales which will result in an improved and coordinated passenger service and provide increased customer choice.'

Leo Markham, of the National Federation of Bus Users, said similar deals should be set up elsewhere in Wales.

The rail service to the airport is due to start next spring following a pounds 17m investment, including two new stations for the Vale of Glamorgan.

Airport passengers and workers will use a shuttle bus between the new Rhoose station and airport terminal.
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Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Nov 9, 2004
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