Bus and coach booking specialist Busbud has revealed the on-board services which passengers not only rate but are also willing to pay for.
As the bus tech industry matures, the findings show where the ancillary revenue opportunities exist for operators, providing of course that they have a B2B back end that facilitates menu pricing and options.
Bus tech has emerged over the past couple of years as an area of interest for investors (see links below). In emerging markets such as India, online bus tickets are seen as a low price entry point for new users to discover the joys of online shopping before moving on to bigger ticket items; established players such as Rome2Rio and GoEuro need access to bus inventory to fulfil their multimodal aspirations.
So buses are no longer the ugly duckling of online distribution, but what are passengers interested in paying extra for?
Busbud's sample is based on 2000 people and found that air conditioning, comfortable seats, a toilet, access to wifi and a direct route are the most important features.
But when it comes to paying extra for these features, there are some interesting differences. A full lie-flat bed compartment is not that important generally but passengers would be willing to pay for one.
Busbud offers different breakdowns of the findings - by demographic, gender, even profession. Millennials are the most interested in paying for a power outlet (although they don't want to pay a lot); men would like additional legroom while women want a direct route; people who work in real estate want clean buses and somewhere to wait.
Click here to access the blog post on Busbud.com to see the survey details in full.
Related reading from Tnooz:
Busfor raises $20 million (Oct 2016)
Busbud seizes B2B opportunity, hires Expedia exec (May 2016)
Startup pitch: PanTrek rolls in with inter-city bus booking for Latin America (May 2016)
Distribusion raises Euro 6 million to expand bus ticket platform (March 2016)