York and its ‘real time’ buses

A recent visit to that lovely city of York and I was riding on its network of park and ride buses, which I’ve done many times before. But this time was rather odd as ‘real time’ notifications at bus stops can clearly be a little bizarre.

It was around 6.30pm and the First Bus back to Designer Outlet (No.7) from Tower Street was said by the real time bus stop screen to be 20 minutes away, with the following one only a minute behind it. I thought that was odd and that’s what it turned out to be.

The screen jumped to only a 13 minute wait in no time at all; the bus must have been flying so to speak. From there it counted down to a 6 minute wait but then shot back up to a 13 minute wait. Had the driver left someone behind and about turned to pick them up?

A brief conversation with a fellow and obviously local passenger awaiting the same bus and I’m told the screens and the buses aren’t necessarily in harmony with each other. Mm, that’s just what I had been wondering.

The screen kept changing and eventually it signalled an 8 minute wait. However, the bus then appeared!

Well yes, it was Cyber Monday and the traffic was very heavy but we were supposed to be looking at real time information so was it not real or indeed timely information?

York and/or it’s bus company must have invested significantly in the technology to provide passengers/customers with reliable real time information but what we were looking at was random information purporting to be helpful and even accurate.

Cyber Monday is supposedly about good value online deals, I wonder where York went for its real time technology deal?

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