Buses in Hanoi (Source: VNA)
 
Hanoi (VNA) – The number of people in Hanoi choosing bus as their means of transportation is rising. In the first half of this year, 221 million tickets were sold, an increase of 5 percent compared to the same period last year.

According to the municipal Department of Transport, in 2017, Hanoi’s public buses sold 441 million tickets, up 1.9 percent over the previous year.

The Hanoi Transport and Services Corporation (Transerco) reported that the number of passengers using monthly-paid bus passes issued by rose 6.6 percent so far this year, while the rise of this group of passengers throughout the capital city was recorded at 5.4 percent.

Transerco, with its eight sub-agencies and three joint-stock companies, is in charge of operating many inner-city bus routes, accounting for 81.5 percent of the city’s subsidised bus routes. According to Nguyen Cong Nhat, the corporation’s deputy director, the number of tickets sold to public bus riders reached its peak of 414.8 million in 2012 and started falling afterwards.

On October 20, the company launched Line 109 connecting My Dinh bus terminal to Noi Bai International Airport. The modern buses, with a capacity of carrying 60 passengers each, have free wifi and GPS system.

The launch of the line makes it easier for passengers to reach the airport from the city downtown, while easing overload in Line 07 from Cau Giay district to Noi Bai International Airport.

In the past two years, Transerco replaced 320 old buses with new, modern ones. In 2018 alone, the firm has replaced 132 old buses with new ones meeting the EURO 4 emission standards.

Alongside, the firm has piloted the operation of minibus, with a capacity of 20 to 24 passengers each, to access small, high-density streets, helping transport passengers from those areas to the main bus routes, and bus rapid transit (BRT).

With an aim to better serve local passengers and tourists, Hanoi has launched its first-ever “Hop on – Hop off” buses to serve tourists exploring the capital city.

The first route was launched on May 30 by Transerco, using the roofless buses and giving visitors a view of the city from the bus top.

Route 01 departs from the Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square near Hoan Kiem Lake, passing Le Thai To – Trang Thi- Dien Bien Phu – Doc Lap – Hoang Van Thu – Hung Vuong – Thanh Nien – Yen Phu – Thanh Nien – Hung Vuong – Phan Dinh Phung - Hoang Dieu – Le Hong Phong – Hung Vuong – Nguyen Thai Hoc – Van Mieu – Quoc Tu Giam – Ton Duc Thang – Nguyen Thai Hoc – Cua Nam - Phan Boi Chau – Ly Thuong Kiet – Phan Chu Trinh – Hai Ba Trung – Le Thanh Tong – Trang Tien - Dinh Tien Hoang and ends at the bus station (starting point).

In the weekend, as the pedestrian streets open, the route changes to Hanoi Opera House – Trang Tien – Ngo Quyen – Ly Thuong Kiet – Quang Trung – Trang Thi – Dien Bien Phu – Doc Lap – Hoang Van Thu – Hung Vuong – Thanh Nien – Yen Phu – Thanh Nien - Hung Vuong – Phan Dinh Phung  - Hoang Dieu – Le Hong Phong – Hung Vuong – Nguyen Thai Hoc – Van Mieu – Quoc Tu Giam – Ton Duc Thang – Nguyen Thai Hoc – Cua Nam-Phan Boi Chau – Ly Thuong Kiet – Phan Chu Trinh – Hai Ba Trung – Le Thanh Tong – Hanoi Opera House.

The operation time of the service is from 9:00 to 18:10. One bus will depart in every 30 minutes. Ticket price is 300,000 VND (13.2 USD) for a four-hour tour, 450,000 VND (19.8 USD) for 24 hours, and 650,000 (28.6) for 48 hours.

Meanwhile, the second city bus route became operation from late September this year from 9am to 5:30pm daily at 30-minute intervals. Along the 14.8km route from Dien Hong Park on Ngo Quyen street, there will be 10 stops for tourists to hop-on and hop-off.

The launching of the route is part of the city’s efforts to lure more than 25.4 million tourists, including 5.5 million foreigners.

Hanoi’s public bus system currently meets only 13 percent of passenger transportation demands, while the city is set to meet 20 to 22 percent by 2020.-VNA