The latest figures from the National Passenger Survey compared to the same period last year show satisfaction increases of 11 percentage points there being 'sufficient room to sit and stand', nine per cent for 'punctuality' and four for 'comfort of seating' on CrossCountry's services. These increases follow a multi-million pound investment programme providing over 4,000 extra seats and 25 per cent more luggage space on CrossCountry's fleet of 91 trains; and initiatives to increase reliability resulting in record performance figures for Britain's largest rail franchise.
Customers also responded well to the company's moves to make staff more accessible, with satisfaction improvements of eight percent for 'availability of staff', five per cent for 'provision of information' and five per cent for 'helpfulness of staff'. This follows the introduction of a 'service at seat' of refreshments for all customers throughout the train, enabling staff to talk to customers and provide information and assistance during their journey.
Speaking about the survey results Andy Cooper, Managing Director for CrossCountry, said: "This is great news for everyone at CrossCountry that customers are recognising their hard work to provide a better service. Since the start of our franchise 19 months ago we have been focused on improving the things our customers and Passenger Focus tell us are important - better punctuality and the onboard experience. I am pleased this independent survey shows our efforts are recognised by the millions of people who use our trains."
Please find notes to Editors, CrossCountry facts and figures below.
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CrossCountry started operating on 11 November 2007. The franchise, which is the most extensive in the UK, will run until 31 March 2016. For further information on CrossCountry services and future franchise plans log on to www.crosscountrytrains.co.uk
Arriva is one of the largest private sector providers of passenger transport in Europe, employing more than 43,500 people (including share of associate companies) and providing more than one billion passenger journeys every year.
Arriva provides transport services including buses, trains, commuter coaches and water buses, and operates in 12 European countries: Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden and the UK.
CrossCountry facts and figures:
STATIONS SERVED: 118
ROUTE MILES: 1,654
WEEKDAY SERVICES: 293
PASSENGERS CARRIED: Over 30 million passenger journeys a year anticipated
ANNUAL TRAIN MILEAGE: Approximately 16 million
EMPLOYEES: Approximately 1,700
LONGEST TRAIN SERVICE: 08.20 Aberdeen to Penzance (774 miles)
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