Food, drink on V/LINE buses a must

V/LINE’S North East regional manager has requested Wodonga’s station manager make water available free of charge when bus replacement services are operating.

Jonathan McKeown will also investigate how a better quality and range of food might be made available to customers where coaches replace Albury trains due to unplanned disruptions or infrastructure maintenance.

The move comes after a passenger wrote to V/Line after being caught out when no extra time was allocated to allow customers to get refreshments at Seymour during a swap from a train to a coach in January.

Mr McKeown said in a letter to the passenger that V/Line had contacted the coach operators contracted to provide replacement train services along the Albury corridor.

He reiterated the need to allow enough time for customers to buy food and drinks, particularly on extremely hot days.

Mr McKeown has also asked the station manager at Wodonga to buy extra bottled water.

The water will be provided to customers free when bus replacement services are operating.

A V/Line spokesman said there were a number of difficulties in providing food with no appropriate catering or storage facilities available at Wodonga or Seymour stations.

“V/Line is investigating how a better quality and range of food might be made available to customers where coaches replace Albury trains,” he said.

“We are conscious of the needs of customers who might be travelling for medical reasons and need access to the variety of food normally offered on the train cafe bar.

“V/Line has a number of communication channels to advise customers when a train replacement coach will operate.

“This advance notice gives customers the chance to buy or bring food and a drink with them on the coach.

“V/Line receives both complaints and compliments when coaches stop enroute to allow customers to purchase food.”

The issue will be discussed at the next Albury Customer Reference Group meeting.

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