BusyBus, a tiny sightseeing day-tour coach company operating from Liverpool, Manchester and Chester has been forced to furlough its entire workforce and SORN its fleet due to Covid-19. Instead of enjoying the boom 2020 season, it has spent the past weeks developing what it hopes will become an integral part of getting footfall back onto its tour vehicles.
THE ”NEW” NEW
Like most coach and transport providers in tourism, BusyBus falls between the cracks of clarity regarding just when and how its wheels can turn again. Social distancing is the clear and obvious issue. 2-meter separation would take a 49-seater coach down to a capacity of around 20 and require a sophisticated and disciplined boarding procedure relying on everyone’s participation. A 16-seater minibus could just about get 6 onboard under such conditions. It would be economically unsustainable.
So, what is the answer? Pack up and close? Well, BusyBus thinks it has at least part of the solution: Stage right, TravSafe. This neat, simple heat-sealed pack contains everything needed by each passenger to maximise their protection against airborne and surface-festering infection where social distancing is impractical or impossible.
The pack is designed for single-use (over a journey or perhaps a day) and contains hand wipes, gloves, face mask, face shield, tissues, Covid-Aware statement, and full instructions. The pack itself acts as a safe disposal “bin” and the entire package is made from recyclable materials.
BusyBus has handed over its concept to a start-up trading brand “TravSafe”. It is wholly owned, utilising the same management team and operates from BusyBus’s depot near Chester. It aims to redeploy the hard-working loyal BusyBus workforce into production until they can resume their normal roles again.
Says Peter Rosenfeld, Managing Director of BusyBus and Travsafe; “This is not something I envisaged 10 weeks ago and has tested every entrepreneurial skillset we had in our bottom drawers. From crisis through concept, creation, market research, procurement, infrastructure, production, legislation, packaging, website shop to delivery in under 4 weeks!
The product needed to be practical, sustainable, and commercially viable to high-usage coach and transport operators. So many are cashing-in on this crisis and selling individual items contained in this pack for over 25 times their value. We do not want to exploit the situation. We want to find an affordable solution and support our friends, colleagues, and peers in the industry. We think we have achieved this.”
Packs can be purchased online through www.travsafe.co.uk for as little as £5 and can be free-issued to each passenger that doesn’t have their own equivalent or even sold if necessary. Says Peter; “It’s an unwanted £5 “tax” per passenger but is no different than a commission paid to an OTA re-seller for delivering clients. It is also the difference between a passenger selecting your company over a competitor when they feel though about, safe and secure; in fact, TravSafe!”