National Express – Countrywide Bus Travel at Affordable Prices
The company which is now National Express has its roots in 1972, when the government of the day brought together a variety of state-owned regional bus services under one brand, which was originally known as simply "National". The National Express name was first used by the state-owned company in 1974. National Express was privatised by the Thatcher government in the 1980s and a management buy-out followed in 1988. The new owners set about consolidating National Express by buying up several competing bus companies in various parts of the country. National Express plc, as the company is now known, has been listed on the London Stock Exchange since 1992. The company's extensive bus fleet includes a large number of ultra-modern Volvo B9R buses, many of which offer leather seats to all passengers.
National Express: Ticket Outlet Finder and Online Shop
Passengers wishing to buy their bus tickets or the company's discount Coachcards in person can use any of the more than 2,000 registered National Express Ticket Outlets, including the company's coach stations, throughout Britain. A full list of these ticket agents is to be found by using the "Ticket Outlets" link homepage.
The National Express website at www.nationalexpress.com operates as the company's online ticket office. This National Express online shop allows customers to book coach travel to any of the company's destinations as well as offering additional services, such as Coachcards, special offers on hotels and the ability to track the progress of individual coaches.
Most prominently displayed on the homepage is a "Choose Your Journey" box which, when details of the desired route and a date are entered and the green "Find My Journey" button is used, displays the best value coach journeys available on the chosen date.
Product Range at Nationalexpress.com
On the National Express website, you can choose a service very easily. These are:
- Airports – Featuring a comprehensive list of airports that National Express coaches serve.
- Events – With regular special offers on travel to music festivals such as Glastonbury as well as to major sporting events.
- Destinations – Directing passengers to all of the destinations that National Express coaches serve.
- Offers – Featuring a "Lowest Fare" section as well as offers available on the various National Express coachcards.
- Hotel Deals – With special offers for National Express passengers at some of the company's main destinations, such as Birmingham, Bristol and London.
- Manage My Booking – Allowing those who've already booked tickets to view their forthcoming journeys.
- Help And Advice – Including a searchable Frequently Asked Questions section.
Deals from National Express
National Express has a wide variety of ongoing deals for customers, including its discount Coachcards. The prominent "Offers" button at the homepage directs customers to individual pages listing the company's special deals by choosing one of a variety of options:
- Find Our Lowest Fares – Featuring the latest offers including those on special events.
- Group Offers – With discount fares of up to 25% for those travelling in groups of four or more
- Senior Coachcard – Which can be bought by those aged 60 or over and provides discounts of up to one third on selected services.
- Disabled Coachcard – Offered to people who are registered as disabled and which can provide discounts of up to one third. A fixed fee is payable for this card.
- Young Person's Coachcard – Which can be purchased by those aged between 16 and 26 offering a third off some standard fares and with regular special offers to selected festivals and events.
- Family Coachcard – Which, for a one-off fee, offers free travel to one or two children travelling with adults.
- Brit Xplorer Pass – Offering unlimited travel for seven days to any National Express destination in the UK for one fixed fee.
- Coach holidays – With package deals including coach travel and accommodation.
Once payment is made, the company says the selected card should be received within seven days. Coachcards can also be purchased at selected National Express Ticket Outlets.
Coachcard enquiries can be made by phone on 08717 818181 with lines open 8:00 to 22:00, every day. Customers should note that these calls cost 13p per minute plus the regular access charge.
In addition, the "Hotel Deals" section on the homepage has regular special offers for accommodation at many of the major National Express destinations. Customers should note that all of these Hotel Deals are operated in conjunction with the Holiday Extras company.
Customers can also monitor the National Express homepage for regular online only discount deals on bus tickets.
Ordering Products at National Express
There is no requirement to register when buying a National Express bus ticket but it is recommended. The company says that registration allows customers to opt in to e-mails offering exclusive offers, competitions and travel tips. Registration can be made prior to any purchase by going to appropriate section on the homepage and filling out the appropriate details.
The company says that registering also means that future ticket purchase will also be made quicker, by simply logging in each time tickets on National Express are required.
Customers who prefer not to register can simply buy their tickets on the National Express site, declining the invitations to register with the company.
National Express – Accepted Payment Methods
National Express accepts payment by: MasterCard, Maestro, Visa, PayPal.
eVouchers bought from National Express can also be used as payment online, while physical Gift Vouchers can only be redeemed at a registered National Express outlet.
National Express Shipping
National Express offers a selection of ways for passengers to receive their ticket or tickets. During the purchase process, customers can choose to opt for a National Express eTicket, which is e-mailed to passengers free of charge. When boarding their National Express coach, customers should simply show the coach driver this e-mail on their smartphone or tablet.
Alternatively, National Express charges 50p for an SMS Ticket which is then texted to customers.
Those who prefer a physical ticket posted to any address worldwide can opt for this service, at a charge of £2. Customers can also opt to pick up a physical ticket at a designated National Express Collection point at a charge of 50p.
Cancellations at Nationalexpress.com
Customers wishing to cancel their National Express ticket should call National Express on 03717 818181 (charged at standard network rates) with lines open every day from 8:00 to 22:00, seven days a week.
If a ticket is refundable, then a £5 fee is charged for cancellations. National Express says eligible tickets must be cancelled a minimum of 72 hours prior to the departure time.
Customers should note that not all National Express tickets are refundable, with some special fares made available on condition that no cancellation or change of journey can be made. The company says this is always made clear on both the booking and on the ticket itself.
National Express on Social Media
National Express has a comprehensive social media presence and is available on:
National Express also has a regularly updated blog offering tips on travel and information about the company's destinations.
National Express Apps
A National Express app allows customers to book tickets and to track the progress of any coach at any time as well as to find bus stops. This app can be downloaded here:
Contact National Express
Customers wishing to contact National Express can:
- Call 0871 7818181, noting that calls cost 13p per minute plus your service provider's access charge. These lines are open every day from 8:00 to 22:00, for new bookings and general enquiries.
- Call 0371 781818, with charges at a local rate, for customers with existing bookings or for advice while travelling, with lines open seven days a week from 8:00 to 22:00.
- Call the company's head office on 08450 130130, which is open 9:00 to 17:00 Monday to Friday with calls costing 3p per minute plus your service provider's access charge.
- E-mail the company by using the "Send Us An Email" button on the "Contact Us" page.
Write to the company's head office at:
- National Express UK Coach
National Express House
Birmingham, B5 6DD
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