Alerts 25 Bus

Frequently Asked Questions  - Travel and COVID-19

What is the current status of public transport in West Yorkshire?  

From Wednesday 2 December 2020, West Yorkshire will enter Tier 3 (Very high) of the government's local COVID alert level system.

 Public transport is still available for who those who need it. People can still travel for work, education, health and caring purposes and to visit amenities which are open however people are encouraged to reduce the number of journeys they make and to avoid travel into and out of West Yorkshire. Capacity is currently limited across services and we ask that passengers allow extra time, consider the time of day they travel, follow social distancing guidelines, wear a face covering and check their journey before setting off. Cycling and walking journeys should be considered if it is possible to do so: cyclecityconnect.co.uk.

How can I help? 

We are asking passengers who need to travel to:

  • Reduce the number of journeys they make if possible and to avoid travel into and out of West Yorkshire.
  • Wear a face covering. It is mandatory on public transport, in Bus and Rail Stations, Interchanges and Travel Centres including retail outlets.
  • Follow social distancing, to wash their hands before and after travel.
  • Carry hand sanitiser and to use contactless payments. 
  • Consider cycling and walking for journeys, if they can.

Can I travel in a car with someone outside my household? 

It is advised that people avoid sharing cars with other households (outside your support bubble) and where it is unavoidable, all travellers should wear a face covering and ensure good ventilation.

Can I stay overnight outside of West Yorkshire? 

West Yorkshire residents should avoid overnight stays outside of the region. People from outside the region are advised not to have overnight stays within West Yorkshire. 

When is the best time for me to travel? 

Buses in our towns and cities are running mostly as normal between 7am and 7pm Monday to Friday and are currently busy throughout the day. A limited service is operating in the evening and at weekends. The capacity of buses is limited to meet social distancing and, if the bus becomes full, you may not be able to board. We are asking people to consider alternative ways of travelling, such as walking or cycling, or to allow more time for journeys.

Limited capacity - from November electronic displays at stops and shelters across West Yorkshire will display how busy the bus is.  You can also download the First or Transdev App to see how many empty seats are available on their services.

First App

Transdev App

Trains will be operating at least hourly on most routes however space is limited to meet social distancing and you may find the train to be uncomfortably busy especially at peak times. 

Is travel information up to date? 

The frequent changes that have been made to services in response to the COVID-19 pandemic means that printed information at bus stops may not be available. We are working to address this and will update the busiest stops from early November

We are however keeping our digital and real time information services up to date, please check www.wymetro.com and @MetroTravelNews on Twitter for the most accurate information.

From November electronic signs at bus stops will display how busy the service is. Bus companies First and Transdev provide live information on how busy their buses are on their mobile apps which are available to download. 

First App

Transdev App

I am experiencing symptoms of Covid-19. Can I travel? 

No. You must not travel if you are experiencing any coronavirus symptoms, are self-isolating as a result of coronavirus symptoms, are sharing a household or support bubble with somebody with symptoms, or have been told to self-isolate after being contacted by NHS Test and Trace. For the latest guidelines visit gov.uk/coronavirus

I live with someone who has symptom of Covid-19. Can I travel? 

No, in line with government guidelines you must not travel if you are sharing a household or support bubble with somebody with symptoms. For more information visit gov.uk/coronavirus

If there is limited capacity will my bus or train become full?

It is possible that buses and trains may become full as operators adhere to social distancing guidelines. We are suggesting you plan ahead and take extra time for your journey.

Electronic signs at bus stops now display how busy the service is. Bus companies First and Transdev provide live information on capacity on their buses on the First and Transdev mobile app which are available to download. 

First App

Transdev App

Why is my bus not stopping to pick up passengers? 

Drivers will be monitoring the number of people travelling on the bus and once the bus is full drivers will be unable to pick passengers up until someone gets off the vehicle. 

What assistance is provided for disabled passengers?

Support for disabled passengers remains the same as before coronavirus. More information is available on individual bus and rail operator’s websites. A full rundown of all operators can be found by clicking on this link.

You can also read more about accessible travel on our accessibility page.

If I am a wheelchair user, will I still be able to get on the bus with social distancing in place? 

Operators are asking passengers to consider the travel needs of disabled passengers and wheelchair users and will do all they can to prioritise access to the wheelchair space for a wheelchair user.

What assistance is there for people who are blind or visually impaired?

To comply with social distancing requirements, transport operators have restricted the number of seats available on their services. Ask for assistance if you need help to find a suitable seat.

We recognise that some people who are blind or visually impaired can find it hard to scan their travel pass on the ticket machine on the bus, and usually pass their travel pass to the driver to scan it.  Whilst social distancing is still in place, you can just show your blind person’s pass to the driver as you get on the bus, rather than having to scan it.

Can I sit next to a member of my household on a bus or train? 

You only need to social distance from someone outside your household or support bubble on a bus or train. However, you must follow the individual operator social distancing guidelines on board.

Do I need to wear a face covering? 

It is mandatory to wear a face covering on public transport and across all Bus Stations, Interchanges and Travel Centres including any open retail outlets with exemptions for the very young and those with disabilities or breathing difficulties. Those exempt from wearing a face covering can download an assistance card to help communicate this to staff on bus and rail services in West Yorkshire. Print them off or take a picture on your phone to show the driver, conductor or station staff know what help you need.

A face covering is something that covers your mouth and nose. A guide to making your own can be found here

Children under 11 do not have to wear a face covering. A full list of exemptions from wearing a face covering can be found here.

You do not need to wear a face covering if you have a reasonable excuse not to. Reasonable excuses include:
• not being able to put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability
• if putting on, wearing or removing a face covering will cause you severe distress
• if you are travelling with or providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading to communicate
• to avoid harm or injury, or the risk of harm or injury, to yourself or others
• to avoid injury, or to escape a risk of harm, and you do not have a face covering with you
• to eat or drink, but only if you need to
• to take medication
• if a police officer or other official requests you remove your face covering

Those exempt from wearing a face covering can download an assistance card here to help communicate this to staff on bus and rail services in West Yorkshire. You can print them off or take a picture on your phone to show staff. 

Are you supplying face coverings?  

No, it is up to people using public transport to provide their own face covering. The rules do not require the use of a mask. A scarf or a face covering made from materials found at home will be acceptable. 

What additional cleaning is being carried out?

Extra cleaning is being carried out across all Bus Stations, Interchanges and shelters in West Yorkshire. This includes extra attention to ensure touch points are regularly cleaned and remain disinfected. Bus and rail operators are also carrying out additional cleaning to ensure vehicles are as safe as possible for customers. Measures include increased cleaning frequency of grab rails and poles, entrance door handles and all touch points. Operators are also encouraging staff to increase hand washing frequency and are providing additional cleaning facilities to enable them to do so.

Are you providing hand sanitiser?

Currently we are not providing hand sanitiser for passengers. This is constantly under review and any update will be communicated as soon as possible.

How safe are buses? 

Operators have procedures in place to help maintain social-distancing and we are asking people to observe those rules for their own safety and that of other passengers and staff. Transport operators have adopted cleaning regimes in line with Government guidelines.  

How safe are Bus Stations/shelters?  

We are following government guidelines and are carrying out additional cleaning at our bus stations and interchanges as well as modifications to support social distancing. Additional signage is being provided across the bus network to advise customers of the precautions to take. 

How are you safeguarding transport staff?  

The safety of our staff is paramount and we are closely following the advice from Public Health England. We have increased the cleaning of contact surfaces in line with guidelines and our staff are following social-distancing guidelines. Face coverings are available for staff who would like to use them, but this is voluntary. 

Can I use my Concessionary Travel Pass?  

Public transport is available for those who need it, but people should try and reduce the number of journeys they make where possible. Capacity is currently limited across services and we ask that passengers allow extra time, consider the time of day they travel, follow social distancing guidelines, wear a face covering and check their journey before setting off. Senior, Blind or Disabled pass holders who do need to travel may use concessionary passes after 0930 Monday to Friday and all day at weekends and public holidays. Senior, Blind or Disabled Travel Passes along with young people’s Under 16 or 16-18 MCards can be ordered online. Read more about concessionary travel passes. 

What about school buses?   

School services are operating as normal with duplicate services introduced where necessary. For more information visit wymetro.com/schools

Are AccessBus services running?  

AccessBus is operating a limited service for existing customers who need to travel for essential shopping and is being limited to five passengers per vehicle to enable social distancing. The service is currently operating across all districts and face coverings must be worn on the bus. As capacity is limited, we are encouraging people not to use AccessBus if they have other alternative methods of getting shopping.

Are Temple Green and Elland Road Park and Rides open?   

Elland Road Park & Ride is open and we ask that customers adhere to social distancing and safety guidance on site and when travelling.  Face coverings are mandatory (unless exempt) on all buses and within customer waiting areas.

Will cash still be accepted on buses? 

Operators are continuing to accept cash on buses; however, they are advising customers to buy tickets in advance via mobile apps or pay contactless.  Daily, weekly or monthly MCard tickets can be purchased and stored on mobile devices via the MCard mobile app.

What should I do if I miss the final service of the day? 

Given current capacity constraints it is vital people leave plenty of time for their journey and do not rely on final services of the day.

I’m a key worker and revised timetables and reduced capacity buses aren’t meeting my needs? 

Operators are continuing to add more journeys and are monitoring the current situation. Please visit the operator websites to provide feedback on the current services. 

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