In line with Government guidance, wearing a face covering is mandatory on public transport from Friday 10th July.
There is medical evidence to suggest that wearing a face covering can help us protect each other and reduce the risk of transmission from someone who is suffering from Covid-19, but unaware and not showing symptoms.
The new rule will apply to all passengers in public areas, however, exemptions will apply for those who are not able to wear a face covering for specific medical reasons and children under the age of 13. Further information is available on nidirect at: www.nidirect.gov.uk/coronavirus-safer-travel-guidance and www.nidirect.gov.uk/face-coverings
The step is a further collective way we can work together and travel safely together. We recommend that you continue to follow the advice below when using public transport.
To help you plan your journey here are some simple steps to help you protect yourself and others:
Before you Travel
Is your journey is necessary? If you can work from home, please do so and help reduce pressure on public transport.
If you need to travel consider walking or cycling for shorter journeys.
Do not travel if you are feeling unwell with symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) e.g. a high temperature.
Planning your journey
Timetable check: We are monitoring passenger numbers travelling on bus and train services and will make amendments to timetables as necessary to make sure we have enough capacity for social distancing. Always check the journey planner or download a timetable on the day you wish to travel.
Time of travel: If you can, travel at off peak times when services are less busy and leave some extra time for your journey.
Buying your Ticket: Use prepaid ticket options like the mLink app or buy smartlink cards online. In stations and at Ticket vending machines use contactless payments - don’t forget there will be no change given on board the bus or train. Find Out More
Face coverings: Please consider using a face covering as recommended in the recent NI Government advice when travelling.
Hand washing: Please ensure you wash or sanitise your hands before you travel and as frequently as possible when you travel – Take a hand sanitiser with you if you can.
On your Journey
Keep your distance: Respect other people’s space - we have lots of new signage on board buses and trains and in stations to remind you to keep 2m distance from other passengers and our staff. If taking the bus – use the bell to tell the driver you want off.
Capacity: With social distancing in place, buses and trains carry fewer people, so please be prepared to wait for the next service even if your bus or train appears to have space.
Seating: Please use window seats and leave an empty row of seats in front and behind. When using the bus – avoid using the seats behind the driver. Members of your household can all sit together.
Patience: Please be patient while getting on and off servcies and if you need to queue, please remember to keep your distance.
Respect our colleagues: Please be patient and treat transport staff and fellow passengers with respect and follow instructions and notices
- about which seats to use or how to queue
- requests to board through different doors or to move to less busy areas
- be aware of additional screens, barriers or floor markings
Our staff are helping to ensure your wellbeing and protection.
- Perspex screens: We have new screens fitted to our bus drivers cabs and in stations to shield you and our staff.
- Hygiene: Our front line staff all have gloves and hand sanitisers. They have also been provided with additional PPE equipment as required.
- Hand sanitisers: We have installed public sanitisation units in most of our stations across the network.
- Cleaning: We have rigorous deep cleaning regimes in place for our buses and trains and mobile cleaning teams are travelling throughout the day to keep multi-touch points clean. Find Out More
- Social distance measures: As well as new signage in stations and on board, we have a range of new systems on place to help passengers keep a safe social distance.
- Use a face covering
- Wash or sanitise your hands as often as possible – new public sanitisation units are now in stations for your convenience or carry your own hand sanitiser.
- Ensure you maintain social distancing, where possible, including at busy entrances, exits, under canopies, bus stops, platforms or outside of stations
- Be prepared to queue or take a different entrance or exit at stations
- Wait for the next service if you cannot safely keep your distance on board a train, bus, coach or Glider.
- Wait for passengers to get off first before you board
- Respect other people’s space while travelling
- Avoid consuming food and drink on public transport, where possible
- Be aware of pregnant, older and disabled people who may require a seat or extra space. Be aware that some individuals may have hidden disabilities.
- Travel outside peak times, stagger working hours if possible.
- Use pre-paid tickets such as mLink, Smartlink, dayLink, iLink or contactless payments in stations and at ticket vending points.
The health and safety of our customers, employees and the wider public is paramount, and we will continue to follow all public health instructions as issued by PHA. Information is also available from NI Direct: www.nidirect.gov.uk/coronavirus For the latest updates please follow us on our social media channels.
Please keep well and thanks for your ongoing support.
When you are ready for us, we are ready for you.
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