Passengers encouraged to travel safely as covid restrictions eased
With many shops and businesses open again and schools set to return after the Easter break, Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM), bus, tram and rail operators are preparing to welcome more people safely back on to public transport services.
This week has already seen an increase in trips across the region’s roads and transport network. With this weekend marking the first following the easing of government restrictions, it’s likely there will be an increase in the number of people using public transport to head out shopping and catch up with family and friends for a drink or a bite to eat.
While restrictions have started to ease, social distancing measures remain in place, affecting capacity on public transport.
TfGM is continuing to work with operators to keep passengers safe when travelling, including running as many services as possible. This includes Metrolink operating all available trams, and bus and train operators providing more services across the city-region.
Hand sanitiser dispensers have been installed at bus stations and on buses, at interchanges and on the busiest Metrolink stops, and commonly touched surfaces across the public transport network are also being disinfected and cleaned regularly. Measures have been introduced to support social distancing across the public transport network, and we’re keeping fresh air flowing on trams, buses and trains. A range of tickets and passes are also available to help people travel more flexibly.
People heading out are asked to consider cycling and walking if they can, to combine trips where possible – minimising the number of journeys being made – and to plan ahead allowing extra time for journeys and travelling outside peak periods if possible, when services may be less busy (between 10am and 3pm or after 6pm in the week and before 11am and after 4pm at weekends). People should also continue to follow safe travel guidance including hands, face, space and fresh air.
TfGM Customer Director, Stephen Rhodes, said: “As pubs, restaurants, shops and more businesses across Greater Manchester reopen, we are expecting to see more people heading out to enjoy everything on offer.
“We know people are looking to relax, but it is still important we keep doing our bit and help keep each other safe when we travel. People should continue to follow the latest safe travel guidance – hands, face, space and fresh air.
“Plan ahead and remember to take a face covering out, they are required on public transport unless exempt, it may also be busy so allow extra time for journeys.
“How and when people travel will be even more important with schools returning next week. By not travelling during the peak periods, people will help free up capacity on public transport and the roads around schools and colleges.”
If using public transport, passengers must remember to wear a face covering, including at transport hubs and interchanges, and in taxis and private hire vehicles, unless exempt. They should also:
- Keep their distance from other passengers where possible.
- Clean their hands frequently and carry hand sanitiser.
- Use contactless payment if they can.
With this weekend seeing outdoor leisure and hospitality open again there may also be an increase in the number of people using taxis and private hire vehicles to get around. If so, please make sure you know the latest guidance to ensure you can keep yourself, the driver and anyone travelling with you safe.
Further information for customers and businesses is available online at the TfGM coronavirus travel page.
Transport for Greater Manchester Press Office
0161 244 1055
Notes to editors
- Total trips on Greater Manchester’s roads and public transport services on Tuesday 13 April compared to the previous Tuesday (6 April) stood at 6.2m, up 468k (8%) on the previous week. For further information contact the press office.