Originally Posted by Mark Gleeson
The possible market share of the coach competition is small as they don't have the capacity to actually take on Irish Rail's position
Looking at journey time reductions of 10-20 minutes on Dublin Cork in Dec/Jan
Ignore the rubbish coming out of the Independent as it doesn't stack up, if everyone has defected to the bus, why are Bus Eireann's numbers also down? Baring in mind for most routes Bus Eireann has no private competition
The fall in passenger numbers actually happened 3 years ago, before bus competition really arrived. Some routes the numbers are actually up.
It will be interesting to see if IR thin out the Dublin/Cork servive - some trains are pretty lightly loaded but the hourly frequency is particularly attractive for business customers who might not consider the train at all if faced with the prospect of a two hour wait should meetings over-run or whatever.
Students are probably the most likely to defect to buses as they travel reasonably regularly and have limited budgets. The tendency to migrate to bus is obviously greater if modal journey times are little different, departure points are more convenient and comfort levels are reasonably comparable.
The major competitor for the railway is not the bus, it is the private car - the motorist needs an excuse to leave his car behind - i.e. less stress, greater comfort, availability of catering, faster journey times, avoidance of rising fuel costs, avoiding city centre parking charges.