Help pages




Introduction – what this web site allows you to do


Plan your journey

·         Step 1 : where do you want to travel from and to

o   Postcode or address

o   Stop or station

o   Locality or point of interest

o   Point on map

·         Step 2 : when do you want to travel

·         Step 3 : choose your options

o   Via

o   Accessible Transport Requirements

o   Means of Transport

o   Journey Type

o   Avoiding Central London

o   Walking preferences

o   Cycle options

o   Use a specific operator

·         Step 4 : Submit your enquiry

·         Step 5 : reading the results

·         Using the maps

·         Helpful tips


Find the timetable for a service


Other features

·         My regular trip

·         Next departures

·         Times from my stop

·         The code for my stop

·         Contact details




this web site allows you to ...

along with the following features that can be found under the More button


Each week we update our own databases which cover London and the South East, South West, East Anglia, East Midlands and West Midlands regions of England, and we import data from the traveline regions which cover the North West, Yorkshire, North East, Scotland and Wales.


You can view all information on screen – or download most of it in a PDF file for printing.  And all functions where relevant are supported by interactive maps and by static maps in printable PDF format.


You don’t need to know anything about the public transport system – you can look things up for any location using a postcode, an address, the name of town or village, or the name of an attraction (a point of interest) ... or just by selecting a point on a map.  But you can also use the name of a stop or station, too, if you want to!


If you have poor eyesight, or use a screen-reader, or use a mobile phone browser, we offer a large text & mobile option for the journey planner - whilst PDF outputs of other information allow you to magnify the details to view them more easily if necessary.  Many of our web site services are also available through our apps on iPhone, iPad, iPod and Android devices - with a Windows Mobile version available in early 2015.



Plan a journey

Step 1 - where do you want to travel from and to

Enter your origin and destination in the From and To boxes.




How to enter your origin or destination

Postcode or Address

You should enter either just the postcode, or the postal address including house or building number, street and suburb or town (but without its postcode). In both cases the journey plan will be calculated to or from the centre of the postcode area.


We recommend the use of postcodes as the easiest way to enter a precise location for the start or end of a journey.


You can also enter either a street (with its suburb or town) on its own – this may match to one or more stops and/or a list of individual addresses in the named street, from which you will be invited to make a selection. For example:



Stop or Station

Enter the name of a rail station, tram stop or bus stop as your origin or destination. Rail Stations are named in the format “Ipswich Rail Station”.  Tram stops are named in the format “Lace Market Tram Stop”.  Bus Stops should have the name of town or village before the standard name of the stop, such as “Aylesbury Horse & Jockey”. For example:



Locality or Point of Interest

Enter the name of a locality (town, suburb or village), or the name of a landmark or a point of interest (with its locality). Entering a locality will plan your journey to or from a specific point in the centre of the requested locality. For example:




Points of Interest include landmarks, sporting venues, hospitals, tourist attractions, public buildings, health and education locations and parks. For some attractions the data we receive gives a location which does not reflect the best access point, particularly for rural locations such as stately homes or nature reserves,  Cross-check with other sources and then use the map option (as described below) to set a more appropriate position for the location you want.


Point on map

Although you can start with the map of the region, it is normally better to focus the map on a location from which you can then explore. So normally enter the name of a location (eg: town or village) and then click the Map button and navigate through the map to find your origin or destination.




·         Zoom in to make an accurate selection.

·         Right-click on the spot you’d like to select and then left click on “Set Origin” or “Set Destination”. A flag will then appear to mark your chosen location.


See the Using the Maps section below for more information.




Step 2 – when do you want to travel

·         Select Leave from the drop-down list if you want to specify the date and time that you want to leave (this is the default setting).

·         Select Arrive from the drop down list if you want to specify the date and time when you want to arrive at your destination.




The journey planner defaults to show the current date and about 15 minutes ahead of the current time.


The journey planner will normally offer one journey that departs before the requested "leave" time, and at least three after that time; or one journey that arrives after the requested "arrive" time and at least three before that time.


If you want to plan your journey in advance, change the date and time using the drop down lists. Remember that planning more than two weeks ahead runs the risk that details could change before you actually make your journey – so please check your plan a few days before you travel.

To get an idea of services for a date after those offered in the drop down list, then select the same day of the week (and not a public holiday) towards the end of the dates listed and plan for that date.  It can only be a guide to what might be available as services may change before you want to travel.


Step 3 – choose your options



We recommend that you start by planning a journey using the default options - and only change options if the default does not find a suitable solution for your needs.


Add via   [East Midlands region only]

This option on the East Midlands site allows you to ensure your journey goes via a particular location, and is particularly useful if your journey can be made by different routes using connecting services.

The journey solution works better if you select the actual interchange point desired, such as the name of a Rail Station, or Bus Station or Stop, instead of just the name of a town or village.

Please note that if you select a via location on a journey that is normally possible without changing vehicles, the journey planner will assume you wish to visit that location and offer a break with a later onward stage.

Journey via  [in South East and Anglia region]

If you need to force a journey to go via a particular location, and this is not offered in the initial plan offered for the journey, then you will have to plan the journey in stages.  Start by planning the journey to your "via" point - and then use the onward journey feature to plan the journey from there to your final destination.


Accessible Transport Requirements

For those with impaired mobility the journey planner allows you to seek journeys which are suitable for a wheelchair user (step-free) or for which assistance is available (or both).


The Step Free option will consider all options which can offer a step-free journey, both with and without assistance. It will include buses and coaches that have access ramps fitted that would enable a wheelchair user to access the vehicle unaided, or vehicles with wheelchair lifts. It includes step-free tram and light rail stations, and underground stations that are step free from street to vehicle. It also includes rail (stations and services) and coach services for which you should book in advance to ensure staff are available to help you to board and alight a vehicle, and to secure a wheelchair space where required.


The Staff Assistance option should be used if you require staff assistance on your journey. This option includes any stations and stops where staff assistance is provided, as well as places where assistance may only be available on the vehicle, rather than at the station or stop. Please note you should always book assistance at National Rail stations at least 24 hours in advance. It does not include the bus network, or tram and light rail services, where in general no staff assistance is available.


Means of Transport

The ticked boxes indicate which means of transport will be used for your journey. If you would like to exclude a specific means of transport from your search, simply un-tick the box next to it. However you must have at least one means of transport selected – and remember that some journeys may be difficult or impossible to make if certain means of transport are excluded.


Journey Type

The following journey types are available:


Set the journey type by clicking on the button to the left. Only one journey type can be selected per journey. Where relevant the journey planner may offer slightly slower journeys alongside the fastest ones where the slower options involve fewer interchanges.


Avoid Central London

Tick the box if you would like to avoid Central London. This can be particularly relevant if you expect to be able to travel more cheaply if you avoid Central London.


Walking preferences

Allow walk to best stops is a setting which only affects the planning of journeys which start or end at a stop or station. The normal setting is to allow walk to best stops – so your journey may start or end with a walk to another stop or station if this offers the fastest overall journey.  If this setting is "un-ticked” then the planner will plan your journey from the specific stop or station you have asked for – but this may result in strange solutions being offered.


You can select your preferred walking speed and a time limit for walking to, from or between stations or stops. Changing the walking speed and time limit will affect the distance you can cover, and may increase or decrease the number of connections that can be found. For example, a person walking at an average speed who is willing to walk up to 30 minutes between stations or stops may find more potential connections than someone walking at the same speed but only willing to walk up to 20 minutes.


Enter the maximum walking time you want to allow at the start, at the end and at each interchange on your journey. You can also change your walking speed from average to either slow or fast.  Where a journey cannot be made within the limits specified, then the planner may ignore these settings in order to find a solution.


Cycle options

Tick the allow bike box to plan a journey with your bike. Enter the maximum cycling time in the appropriate box and your desired speed. You can choose from the cycle only option, the leave bike at station option in which you ride to a train station as the first part of your journey or the take bike on public transport option.  But non-folding bikes are not generally permitted on buses, and the rules for taking bikes on trains are complicated – whilst we may offer a plan which shows this option we cannot confirm that you will be allowed to take your bike on the train – check this at




Use a specific operator  [East Midlands only]

This option allows you to select a single bus operator – particularly useful if you have a single operator’s day rover or season ticket.  Simply click the box alongside the bus operator you only want to use.  


Remember, however, that all other bus operators will be omitted and some journeys may be difficult or impossible if the full network of services cannot be used.


The list of operators covers only those running bus services in the East Midlands region.


Step 4 – Submit your enquiry

Click step4_1  to begin the search for your journey.  You may be asked to confirm aspects of your enquiry and then Submit it again.

If you do not see the location you want in the list, click step4_2  and start your search again.  Change the way you describe the location – and keep it simple, as less is often better!  NEVER include the name of a county.

If you wish to clear the form and start again, click step4_3  


Click step4_4  to see the additional criteria such as means of transport, journey type, walking, and cycling preferences (if they are not already on screen).


Step 5 – reading the results


The journey results page contains:


Walk legs are calculated as accurately as possible but may be "projected" as a straight line from as close a point as possible to any off-road location. These can result in impossible walk legs - so please check other sources to ensure that the route looks feasible, or adjust the location (with the map option) if necessary.


From the journey results page you can also:
Helpful links on the journey results page:


Using the maps



How to set your origin or destination on a map

·         Navigate to the location you want to select.  If you want to centre the map on a specific location, enter any type of location and click Submit.

·         Double-click to zoom in to make an accurate selection.

·         Right click on the spot you wish to set and then click on “Set Origin” or “Set Destination” as required.  A little green flag marked “A” will mark your chosen location as a start point, or a red flag marked “B” will do the same for the end point.


If you change your mind, you can right click again on another location and re-set the origin or destination to a new spot.



Helpful Tips

You can plan journeys up to about 3 months in advance ... but when planning a journey in advance, make sure you check the journey again closer to the date you are travelling, as services may change.

Use the Modify Journey button on the Solutions page to change any part of your journey search.  Do NOT use the back button on your browser as this can cause problems.


To find the first journeys of the day click the Earliest button on the Travel Plan page.  To find the last journeys of the day click the Latest button on the Travel Plan page.




The Options section allows you to tailor your search to your preferences.



In the Means of Transport list DRT (demand responsive transport) covers services for which you need to phone to book a seat.  You can exclude this but doing so could prevent a journey being found in some rural areas.  Likewise the exclusion of Ferry could make some journeys impossible.


To find journeys that involve fewer interchanges between your origin and destination, click the Least interchange “Journey Type” in the Options section. To find journeys that involve less walking, click the Least walking “Journey Type” in the Options section.  We recommend that you always start by planning a journey using the fastest "Journey Type" – and only then go on to explore alternatives with least interchange or least walking if necessary.


If you have special needs, you can change your walking speed and maximum walk time in the Options section.  Adjusting your walking speed and maximum walk time in the Options section may affect the distance you can cover, which may increase (or reduce) the connections that can be found.  However if you set the maximum walk time to 0 mins then the journey planner may offer taxi for part of the journey when this is not what you want - it is best to allow at least 5 mins as the maximum walk time.


If you need assistance during your journey or a step-free solution then please also see also the section on Accessible Transport Requirements in Step 3 of the Plan a Journey section of this guide

Use the Print all button to print the Summary and details of all journeys, or the Print button for just an individual detailed itinerary, from your Travel Plan.




Use the Email a friend button to send a link to the Travel Summary or Travel Plan to a friend – or even to yourself.




Use the Maps button on each journey plan to help you find your way around when making your journey. The PDF buttons to the right of the map and timetable buttons download a printable PDF file for the map or timetable.




Find a timetable

Currently we can offer timetables for most bus and coach services that operate within our own regions (South East, East Anglia, East or West Midlands, South West or London) – and we are planning to add timetables for services in the other regions soon. Timetables in London are stop-based.


If you just want to see the timetable for a particular service, click the Find a Timetable button at the top of most screens.  You can search by any one, two or all three of:


You can even enter a postcode, an address or a point of interest in the Town or Village box to find services which stop within 20 mins walk of that location.



Service number - entering a number will also list services with a letter before or after that number - so entering 5 will also show the 5A and the X5. Entering 5A or X5, however, will only list services which completely match what you have entered.  Use this box also to enter the name of a service which has a name rather than a number.


Entering the first few letters of an operator's name is better than trying to get the name precisely correct - our system will offer all possible matches with what you have entered.


For a list of all services in a town or village, just enter the name of the town or village. To narrow down the list further, add the name of a particular bus stop – and you will be given a list all services which use that stop.


When you submit this information, the search will take account of whatever you have entered - whether it is just one, two or all three selections - and list only the services which match your requirements.


Click the operator and route description text or the timetable button to see an on-screen display of the timetable of the service; clicking the PDF icon to the right of the timetable button will deliver a printable PDF version of the timetable.  Click the map button to see a map of the route (or click the PDF icon alongside the route map button for a PDF version of the route map).  Route maps are created automatically by following the shortest road route between stops – in some cases this can find a route which is not the route actually used by the bus; we are correcting these when we find them.


Timetables can also be seen using the buttons on each leg of a journey plan.


The timetables are normally shown in three day-group panels (Mon-Fri, Sat, Sun), with extra panels for public holidays when relevant, in each direction.  You select the direction and day of week for the display using the radio buttons at the top of the table. You can select either all stops or just main stops, depending on the detail you need. These timetables can be scrolled to find the information you want.  If you want to print a timetable, then you should click on print version (PDF) to download a printable PDF file (also available if you click the PDF icon alongside any timetable button).



Bookmarks on the PDF (you may need to use Adobe PDF Reader with settings that ensure that Bookmarks are displayed) also provide access to pages listing the SMS Code for each stop - and the name of the road on which each stop is located.  With the scrolling on-screen timetables this information is available in a “tool-tip” – it shows if you hover your cursor over the name of the stop for which you want this detail.


Although the search looks for individual service timetables, some services are shown in "composite" tables with another operator, or with other services, on the same route.


Timetables show clickable links to any known information about disruptions as important information (in a special panel at the top of the scrolling timetables and as an extra bookmark on the PDF). On “composite” timetables (which cover more than one service that are related to each other) the important information relates ONLY to the specific service that was asked for – information about other services in the same table have to be asked for separately.


If you have looked at the timetable for a particular service before then there is a possibility that you will not see any update of that timetable if your browser is set to look for a copy of files that are in the cache on your computer. We recommend using a browser setting that always downloads files each day – otherwise you should click SHIFT-F5 on your computer to force the latest version of the timetable to download.


More features

Clicking on the More button reveals links to other features which include



My regular trip ...

If you make a particular journey frequently, but not always at precisely the same time, you might like a timetable for the journeys in each direction … just showing the times that are important for your journey.  My regular trip ... offers precisely this.


You set up a journey in the normal way, but instead of stating a single time you want to travel, you state the earliest and latest times you want to arrive … and the earliest and latest times you want to leave there for the return journey. These times can cover a period of up to four hours for each direction.


Your personal timetable will be created as a PDF file which you can view, print and save.


Next departures ...

You can see forthcoming departures for any stop by using this service.  You select a stop and if you want to, the time to start the list (if that is not "now").  When we have real-time information this will be offered - but you will need to click the "clock" to obtain it.  Selecting a stop can be done by entering its name – but you can also enter a postcode or address, or the name of a town or village ... which will then list the stops nearby, from which you can make your selection.  The display normally shows as a list on screen – but you can also view stops on a map, where the departure list is shown in a bubble if you hover over a stop marker and select show next departures, or shown in a list if you click on a stop marker.



Times from my stop ...  [not available on the West Midlands site]

You can produce a timetable which lists all departures from any of your local stops – or from any other stop in the region (and we hope to extend this nationwide).  It looks like the listing you might see at the stop itself – but you can save and print your own copy ... maybe to stick it on the fridge, or by the front door – or wherever else it might be useful, at home, at work or wherever.


You enter the name of a location (postcode, stop name, road name, etc) and this shows a map on which you can hover over the relevant stop marker and select show all times from this stop (printable). The timetable will be offered as a PDF file which you can view, print and save.


The code for my stop ...

SMS codes for each bus stop let you get the next few scheduled departure times from a specific bus stop delivered to your mobile phone – either using the traveline-txt SMS service or using the NextBuses mobile internet service.


If you click the more button and then select the code for my stop ..., you can look up the code for any stop – it appears in a bubble when you scroll your cursor over the dot for any stop.


The code for each stop is also shown on detailed itineraries on the journey planner, in a tool-tip if you hover over the name of a stop on a scrolling timetable and on a separate page at the end of each PDF service timetable.


Contact details

We list contact details for most operators and for local authorities in our regions – giving, where we know them, phone numbers, e-mail addresses and web site addresses.  Enter the first part of the name of the organisation and let the system offer the matches it can find – you can then select the organisation you want from the list offered.