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KU students are unsatisfied with new uni bus service

By Idha Valeur Nov 2, 2016
KU shuttle bus to Seething Wells

Students have complained about the inter-site bus service despite new routes, added departure times and environmentally friendly buses.

Students said they found it irritating that the buses still do not work like they are supposed to.

Television and new broadcasting media student Amanda Feingold, 21, who lives at Kingston Hill, relies on KU1 to get to class at Penrhyn Road.

Two weeks ago she phoned the University in anger after waiting for the bus at Kingston Hill.

Feingold said: “I waited an hour once.

“I called the University and I was so furious. They put me through to different people three times before a man apologised and said they would look into it further. I was really late for my class and very annoyed.”

Some students have been forced to use alternative methods in order to get to class on time.

Sam Crónin, a 21-year-old politics and international relations student was happy with the bus during the first week of university, but has now bought a bike. He said: “I used the KU2 from Clayhill and it came on time the first week, but now it never does. It’s easier to walk so I’m not late for class.

“The bus is either too early or too late. I’ve now bought a bike to get to class, but I would like to take the bus as it is quite social.”

Crónin is not the only one who has opted to walk or cycle to University in fear of not making it to class by gambling on the KU bus turning up on time.

Eirik Finseraas, a 23-year-old international law student, is dependent on getting to Kingston Hill for his lectures and feels it is safest to use the 85 bus if he wants to be on time for class.

“I tend to use the 85 to Putney Bridge as it is the only mode of transportation that drives up to Kingston Hill from Kingston Hospital. I probably use it three to four times a week and when I don’t, I walk,” said Finseraas.

He is not pleased with what the KU buses has to offer and wonders if the problem is related to the increase in students on campus that he has noticed.

Eirik Finseraas said: “The inter-site Bus service that KU offers doesn’t even come close to being adequately satisfactory this year. It never shows in accordance with its timetable and when it does it tends to drive past Kingston Hospital as it is too full to let on other passengers.

“I have noticed more students on campus lately, I’m sure that is due to the new attendance policy KU introduced this year, which arguably is a positive thing. I only wish the bus service could progress along the lines of the higher demand so that we wouldn’t have to stand and wait at the bus stops looking like idiots as they drive right past us.”

The University is aware that students are unsatisfied and are working to find a solution.

A Kingston University spokesperson said: “The University is aware of concerns raised about the free inter-site bus service since the new provider took over the contract at the beginning of this academic year. It has been in contact with the provider, RATP Dev London, which is currently working hard to address these issues.”

The new buses are environmentally friendly vehicles and aim to decrease emissions with approximately 25 per cent less carbon and 75-90 per cent fewer pollutants.

RATP Dev London has been contacted but has not been available to make a statement.

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